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 (tŏn′tēn′, tŏn-tēn′)
1. An investment plan in which participants buy shares in a common fund and receive an annuity that increases every time a participant dies, with the entire fund going to the final survivor or to those who survive after a specified time.
2. Each member's share of a tontine.
3. The subscribers to a tontine.

[French, after Lorenzo Tonti (1635-1690?), Italian-born French banker.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ˈtɒntiːn; tɒnˈtiːn)
1. (Banking & Finance)
a. an annuity scheme by which several subscribers accumulate and invest a common fund out of which they receive an annuity that increases as subscribers die until the last survivor takes the whole
b. the subscribers to such a scheme collectively
c. the share of each subscriber
d. the common fund accumulated
e. (as modifier): a tontine fund.
2. (Insurance) a system of mutual life assurance by which benefits are received by those participants who survive and maintain their policies throughout a stipulated period (the tontine period)
[C18: from French, named after Lorenzo Tonti, Neapolitan banker who devised the scheme]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈtɒn tin, tɒnˈtin)

an annuity scheme in which subscribers share a common fund with the benefit of survivorship, the survivors' shares being increased as the subscribers die, until the whole goes to the last survivor.
[1755–65; < French, after Lorenzo Tonti, Neapolitan banker who started the scheme in France c1653. See -ine3]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. an annuity, or loan, based on a group of annuities that are shared among several people with the provision that as each person dies his share is spread among those remaining, and the entire amount accrues to the survivor of them all.
2. the members of the group collectively.
3. each member’s total share or annuity. — tontine, adj.
See also: Finance
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.tontine - a form of life insurance whereby on the death or default of a participant his share is distributed to the remaining members
life assurance, life insurance - insurance paid to named beneficiaries when the insured person dies; "in England they call life insurance life assurance"
2.tontine - an annuity scheme wherein participants share certain benefits and on the death of any participant his benefits are redistributed among the remaining participants; can run for a fixed period of time or until the death of all but one participant
annuity, rente - income from capital investment paid in a series of regular payments; "his retirement fund was set up to be paid as an annuity"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Tontines are investment vehicles that can be used to provide
Tontines helped make Christmas although my 88-year-old father still claims that all he used to get was a shiny penny and a tangerine.
To reach them, we propose an idea that had great success in the 19th century life insurance market: tontines.
On a more technical level Clark defines types of early insurance--contributorships, mortuary tontines, premium insurance and reversionary annuity companies--and chronicles the growth of such landmark businesses as the Royal Exchange Assurance Corporation and London Assurance Corporation at the beginning of the eighteenth century, the Equitable Society of mid-century and the Westminster and Pelican which appeared at century's end.
As mentioned, tontines were popular at the end of the nineteenth century, but they fell out of favor at the beginning of the twentieth century, largely due to fraud and mismanagement of early tontine funds.
The tontines of 100 and more years ago were also built on lapse-supported pricing.
A tontine gave each participant income for life, with the payments increasing to the survivors as the other participants passed away.
WITH TONTINE INSURANCE, all early form of life insurance, time truly meant money.