Simple Definition of contraband
: things that are brought into or out of a country illegally
Full Definition of contraband
1 : illegal or prohibited traffic in goods : smuggling
2 : goods or merchandise whose importation, exportation, or possession is forbidden; also : smuggled goods
3 : a slave who during the American Civil War escaped to or was brought within the Union lines
Examples of contraband in a sentence
The border police searched the car for drugs and other contraband.
Did You Know?
Contraband first appeared in English in the early 1500s as a borrowing of Italian contrabbando. This Italian word can be traced to the Medieval Latin word contrabannum, a combination of "contra-" ("against") and "bannum" ("decree"). "Bannum" is Germanic in origin and is related to Old High German bannan ("to command"). "Bannan" is also related to Middle English "bannen" ("to summon or to curse"), the source of the English verb "ban" (which now means "to prohibit" but which once also meant "to curse").
Origin of contraband
Italian contrabbando, from Medieval Latin contrabannum, from contra- + bannus, bannum decree, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German bannan to command — more at ban
First Known Use: circa 1529
Rhymes with contraband
ampersand, baby grand, bear a hand, beforehand, behindhand, bellyband, belly-land, borderland, bottomland, cap in hand, concert grand, confirmand, countermand, Damavand, Dixieland, ductless gland, eldest hand, fairyland, fatherland, force one's hand, forestland, four-in-hand, garage band, gastric gland, Gelderland, graduand, hand in hand, hand-to-hand, hand to hand, helping hand, high command, hinterland, Holy Land, Krugerrand, lotusland, meadowland, minute hand, motherland, Nagaland, narrowband, no-man's-land, on demand, one-man band, one-night stand, operand, ordinand, out of hand, overhand, overland, parlor grand, pastureland, promised land, prostate gland, public land, radicand, reprimand, Rio Grande, rubber band, running hand, saraband, secondhand, Swaziland, tableland, taxi stand, timberland, Togoland, try one's hand, underhand, undermanned, understand, wonderland, Zululand
CONTRABAND Defined for Kids
Definition of contraband for Students
: goods forbidden by law to be owned or to be brought into or out of a country
Legal Definition of contraband
: property that is unlawfully produced, possessed, or transported contraband per se : property that is in and of itself unlawful to possess, produce, or transport derivative contraband : property that is unlawful because it is used in committing an unlawful act
Origin of contraband
Italian contrabbando act of smuggling, from contra- against + bando edict, law
Seen and Heard
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