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malversation

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noun mal·ver·sa·tion \ˌmal-vər-ˈsā-shən\

Definition of malversation

  1. 1 :  misbehavior and especially corruption in an office, trust, or commission

  2. 2 :  corrupt administration



Did You Know?

The form mal- is often a bad sign in a word, and malversation is no exception. In Middle French, mal- (meaning "bad," from the Latin word for "bad," malus) teamed up with verser ("to turn, handle," from the Latin verb vertere, "to turn ") to create malverser, a verb meaning "to be corrupt." This in turn led to the French noun malversation, which was adopted by English speakers in the mid-16th century. Some other mal- words that entered English from Middle French are maladroit ("inept"), malcontent ("discontented"), and maltreat ("to treat badly").

Origin of malversation

Middle French, from malverser to be corrupt, from mal + verser to turn, handle, from Latin versare, frequentative of vertere to turn — more at worth


First Known Use: 1549


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