ap·pro·pri·a·tion | \ ə-ˌprō-prē-ˈā-shən \

Definition of appropriation 

1 : an act or instance of appropriating something

2 : something that has been appropriated specifically : money set aside by formal action for a specific use the city's appropriation for schools

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Other words from appropriation

appropriative \-ˈprō-prē-ˌā-tiv \ adjective

Examples of appropriation in a Sentence

the appropriation of funds to repair the bridge The economy has been weakened by the appropriation of the country's resources by corrupt officials.

Recent Examples on the Web

And one part of ensuring this happened would be to devise a way to stop a repetition of what occurred with both rubber and ACE inhibitors—namely, their appropriation, without royalties or tax revenues accruing to the locals, by foreign firms. The Economist, "GenomicsSequencing the world," 23 Jan. 2018 Barring that kind of land appropriation, there is little federal officials can do in the United States, which lacks the kind of central political authority of small European nations or China. Nicole Goodkind, Newsweek, "Trump Infrastructure Plan Includes Elon Musk-Style High-Speed Rail Tunnels And Eminent Domain," 5 Jan. 2018 The latter drew the internet’s ire most recently, with people crying cultural appropriation (this was the second time the brand released this item)., "Chanel Is Selling The Dream — & According To Their Numbers, We’re Buying It," 22 June 2018 The act of criticizing a small child’s appearance, indirectly or not, is fraught at best, but the relevance of such questions loom large as the discussion surrounding black hair, identity, and cultural appropriation continues to evolve. Vogue, "Kim Kardashian West Sparks Controversy By Straightening North West's Hair," 15 June 2018 Wey, who co-hosted a seminar on cultural appropriation with Soleil Ho of the Racist Sandwich podcast, responded to the idea that the awards could lead to black chefs being propelled to prominence in San Francisco. Justin Phillips, San Francisco Chronicle, "Black chefs hopeful, skeptical as culinary world grows more inclusive," 28 May 2018 The timing is especially bad given that an American teen wearing a qipao to prom went viral last week, with many critics calling it cultural appropriation. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "Kim Kardashian West Reportedly Names Lingerie Brand ‘Kimono Intimates’," 7 May 2018 Similar controversies over cultural appropriation have erupted in fashion and in Hollywood, across college campuses and in response to advertising campaigns. Samantha Schmidt,, "'It's just a dress': Teen's Chinese prom attire stirs cultural appropriation debate," 1 May 2018 Questions on cultural appropriation seem newer to her. Cassie Owens,, "Philly's Gabriel Ojeda-Sague explores identity through Jazzercise in book of poems," 16 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'appropriation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of appropriation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for appropriation

see appropriate entry 2

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Last Updated

5 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for appropriation

The first known use of appropriation was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for appropriation


ap·pro·pri·a·tion | \ ə-ˌprō-prē-ˈā-shən \

Kids Definition of appropriation

1 : an act or instance of taking especially illegally or unfairly

2 : the act or an instance of setting apart for a special purpose

3 : a sum of money set apart for a special purpose

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Comments on appropriation

What made you want to look up appropriation? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


alleviating pain or harshness

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