bribe

noun
\ ˈbrīb How to pronounce bribe (audio) \

Definition of bribe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : money or favor given or promised in order to influence the judgment or conduct of a person in a position of trust police officers accused of taking bribes
2 : something that serves to induce or influence offered the kid a bribe to finish his homework

bribe

verb
bribed; bribing

Definition of bribe (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to influence the judgment or conduct of (someone) with or as if with offers of money or favor : to induce or influence by or as if by bribery attempting to bribe a judge bribing a child with candy

intransitive verb

: to practice bribery

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Other Words from bribe

Verb

bribable \ ˈbrī-​bə-​bəl How to pronounce bribable (audio) \ adjective
bribee \ ˌbrī-​ˈbē How to pronounce bribee (audio) \ noun
briber noun

Synonyms for bribe

Synonyms: Noun

backhander [British], boodle, cumshaw, fix, sop

Synonyms: Verb

buy, corrupt, have, pay off, square

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Examples of bribe in a Sentence

Noun

I offered the children a bribe for finishing their homework. that judge refused a huge bribe to dismiss the charges against the wealthy defendant

Verb

She was arrested for attempting to bribe a judge. They bribed him to keep quiet about the incident. We bribed the children with candy.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Flaxman, founder and CEO of Crown Realty Development, is said to have paid bribes under the guise of donations—$250,000 for his son to be recruited for soccer at the University of San Diego and $75,000 to help his daughter boost her ACT score. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "Real Estate Developers Indicted Over College Admissions Scam," 13 Mar. 2019 Between 2011 through 2018, Singer allegedly collected $25 million in bribes to help students get into the schools. Emily Bloch, Teen Vogue, "Lori Loughlin, Felicity Huffman Among Dozens of Wealthy Parents Indicted in College Admissions Cheating Scheme," 12 Mar. 2019 According to the indictment, filed in the Southern District of New York, Ms. Karimova and Mr. Akhmedov agreed that Mr. Akhmedov would solicit and facilitate bribe payments from telecommunications companies seeking to enter the Uzbek market. Kristin Broughton, WSJ, "Former Uzbek Official, Telecom Executive Charged in Bribery Scheme," 7 Mar. 2019 Corruption is rampant in Venezuela, and U.S. prosecutors have uncovered billions in fraud and bribes at PDVSA. Joshua Goodman, Fox News, "Maduro's stepsons face scrutiny in $1.2 billion graft case," 24 Aug. 2018 After the Sinaloa cartel boss was recaptured and thrown in another Mexican lockup, the orginization paid a $2 million bribe to a prison official in exchange for getting him moved back to Altiplano, the witness said. Tom Hays, The Seattle Times, "Witness: El Chapo’s wife was in on plans for prison escape," 23 Jan. 2019 The representatives would offer bribes in exchange for the managers making changes to the boards’ official designs. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "If Supermicro boards were so bug-ridden, why would hackers ever need implants?," 11 Oct. 2018 He stood accused of accepting bribes from lawyers with business before him, and of failing to recuse himself from cases involving people who allegedly bribed him. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "It works just like impeaching a president.," 27 Sep. 2018 Elected officials are, however, now having a much easier time getting away with accepting bribes. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation will delegitimize the Supreme Court — and that’s good," 5 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The massive scheme allegedly involved lying about sports involvement, paying for stand-ins for SAT and ACT exams, and even bribing test administrators to change scores. Jenn M. Jackson, Teen Vogue, "Access to Education for Black Children Proves Difficult for Their Parents, Creating a Disadvantage," 13 Mar. 2019 The British investigations into Acacia focus around accusations that employees of the company, which was called African Barrick until 2014, bribed Tanzanian government officials and consultants, according to the people familiar with the matter. Nicholas Bariyo, WSJ, "Britain’s Fraud Office Investigates Acacia Mining," 14 Dec. 2018 Most important, Chávez used it to bribe and corrupt members of other political parties. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Power and Money in Venezuela," 10 Feb. 2019 Knight's trial was initially scheduled for the beginning of this year, January 8, but was delayed after members of Knight's defense team -- Thaddeus Culpepper and Matthew Fletcher-- were indicted for attempting to bribe witnesses. Nerisha Penrose, Billboard, "Suge Knight Finally Gets a Date for Murder Trial," 25 Apr. 2018 Armed with a stack of team owner Mike Ilitch’s American greenbacks, Matveev left for Russia intending to attempt to bribe military generals. Keith Gave, Detroit Free Press, "Russian Five: How Konstantinov faked cancer to join Detroit Red Wings," 26 Mar. 2018 It’s harder to bribe 211 national associations worldwide than 23 individuals. Jonathan Tannenwald, Philly.com, "Warnings about North American 2026 World Cup bid heard loud and clear at Telemundo," 6 Mar. 2018 According to the federal indictment, those decisions were made as a result of Johnson bribing Pierce. Ryan Randazzo, azcentral, "Water taps dry, sewers overflow as Johnson Utilities owner faces bribery trial," 28 June 2018 And Sinopec is under investigation by the U.S. for allegedly bribing Nigerian officials, people familiar said. Erin Roman, Bloomberg.com, "Everything You Need to Know This Morning From Daybreak (Podcast)," 30 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bribe.' 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 bribe

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1528, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for bribe

Noun and Verb

Middle English, morsel given to a beggar, bribe, from Anglo-French, morsel

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Learn More about bribe

Dictionary Entries near bribe

briard

briarroot

briarwood

bribe

bribery

Bribri

bric-a-brac

Statistics for bribe

Last Updated

22 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bribe

The first known use of bribe was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for bribe

bribe

noun

English Language Learners Definition of bribe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something valuable (such as money) that is given in order to get someone to do something

bribe

verb

English Language Learners Definition of bribe (Entry 2 of 2)

: to try to get someone to do something by giving or promising something valuable (such as money) : to give or offer a bribe to (someone)

bribe

noun
\ ˈbrīb How to pronounce bribe (audio) \

Kids Definition of bribe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something given or promised to a person in order to influence dishonestly a decision or action

bribe

verb
bribed; bribing

Kids Definition of bribe (Entry 2 of 2)

: to influence or try to influence dishonestly by giving or promising something

bribe

noun

Legal Definition of bribe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a benefit (as money) given, promised, or offered in order to influence the judgment or conduct of a person in a position of trust (as an official or witness) — compare kickback
bribed; bribing

Legal Definition of bribe (Entry 2 of 2)

: to influence (a person) by giving a bribe

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More from Merriam-Webster on bribe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bribe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bribe

Spanish Central: Translation of bribe

Nglish: Translation of bribe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bribe for Arabic Speakers

Comments on bribe

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