Origin and Etymology of confiscate
Latin confiscatus, past participle of confiscare to confiscate, from com- + fiscus treasury
First Known Use: circa 1533See Words from the same year
Definition of confiscate
1 : to seize as forfeited to the public treasury
2 : to seize by or as if by authority
confiscationplay \ˌkän-fə-ˈskā-shən\ noun
confiscatorplay \ˈkän-fə-ˌskā-tər\ noun
confiscatoryplay \kən-ˈfi-skə-ˌtȯr-ē\ adjective
Examples of confiscate in a Sentence
Guards confiscated knives and other weapons from the prisoners.
The teacher confiscated all cell phones for the duration of the field trip.
Recent Examples of confiscate from the Web
The detectives also confiscated a BB gun during the stop, police said.
Three juveniles were located and their fireworks confiscated.
Instead, in January 2016, the staff sent him to a crowded, unlicensed Baltimore City row house where the owner confiscated his bank card and withdrew $966 over his objections, the lawsuit said.
At about 9 p.m. at one home on the Westside, more than 50 people standing on the street setting off fireworks became angry when Jones pulled up to write citations and confiscate the contraband.
Each gun was confiscated in Los Angeles County by the crime task force, which goes by the acronym L.A. IMPACT, either at crime scenes or from arrestees.
When Justin Driggers, 38, of Sebring, refused to remove the Fourth of July pyrotechnics from sale or display at 1770 East Sunrise Blvd. on Wednesday, police confiscated $100,000 worth of fireworks, a police spokeswoman said.
International Association of Chiefs of Police policy dictates that officers arrested on allegations of domestic violence have their weapons confiscated.
The court turned down a police request to confiscate Uber Finland's assets, but ordered up to 246,000 euros ($279,357) of its country manager Joel Jarvinen's personal assets be frozen.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'confiscate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of confiscate
CONFISCATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of confiscate for English Language Learners
: to take (something) away from someone especially as punishment or to enforce the law or rules
CONFISCATE Defined for Kids
Definition of confiscate for Students
: to seize by or as if by public authority Police confiscated the stolen car.
Legal Definition of confiscate
: to seize without compensation as forfeited to the public treasury — compare criminal forfeiture
confiscation\ˌkän-fə-ˈskā-shən\ play noun
confiscator\ˈkän-fə-ˌskā-tər\ play noun
confiscatory\kən-ˈfis-kə-ˌtōr-ē\ play adjective
Additional Notes on confiscate
Illegal items such as narcotics or firearms, or profits from the sale of illegal items, may be confiscated by law enforcement officers. Additionally, government action that reduces the value of property to a person or entity as to make it nearly worthless has been held to constitute confiscation. Examples of such government action include the passage of zoning laws that prevent the use of land for its designated purpose and the setting of utility rates so low that the utility company cannot realize a reasonable return on its investment.
Seen and Heard
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