early 15c., from Middle French recompense (13c.), related to recompenser "make good, recompense" from Late Latin recompensare (see recompense (v.)).
c. 1400, "to redress," from Middle French recompenser (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin recompensare "to reward, remunerate," from Latin re- "again" (see re-) + compensare "balance out," literally "weigh together," from com "with, together" (see com-) + pensare, frequentative of pendere "to hang, cause to hang; weigh; pay" (from PIE root *(s)pen- "to draw, stretch, spin"). From early 15c. as "to compensate." Related: Recompensed; recompensing.
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