confiscate

adjective
con·​fis·​cate | \ ˈkän-fə-ˌskāt How to pronounce confiscate (audio) , kən-ˈfi-skət How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \

Definition of confiscate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : appropriated by the government : forfeited
2 : deprived of property by confiscation

confiscate

verb
con·​fis·​cate | \ ˈkän-fə-ˌskāt How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \
confiscated; confiscating

Definition of confiscate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to seize as forfeited to the public treasury
2 : to seize by or as if by authority

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Other Words from confiscate

Verb

confiscation \ ˌkän-​fə-​ˈskā-​shən How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ noun
confiscator \ ˈkän-​fə-​ˌskā-​tər How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ noun
confiscatory \ kən-​ˈfi-​skə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for confiscate

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of confiscate in a Sentence

Verb Guards confiscated knives and other weapons from the prisoners. The teacher confiscated all cell phones for the duration of the field trip.
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Chicago police confiscate thousands of firearms off the street each year, and the number of ghost guns typically has been a small percentage of those seizures. Jeremy Gorner, chicagotribune.com, 10 June 2021 The consequences of default are serious: The government can confiscate tax refunds and garnish wages and Social Security. New York Times, 6 June 2021 Indiana's red flag law allows police to confiscate guns from a person deemed dangerous to themselves or others. Casey Smith, Star Tribune, 6 May 2021 In 2014, Bundy and his father, Cliven Bundy, a Nevada rancher, were involved in another armed standoff with federal agents trying to confiscate Cliven Bundy's cattle for his refusing to pay fees for grazing on public land. Meg Cunningham, ABC News, 25 May 2021 In 2014, Bundy, several brothers and his father led an armed standoff in Nevada with Bureau of Land Management agents who attempted to confiscate his father's cattle for grazing on public land without a permit. Rebecca Boone, Star Tribune, 8 Apr. 2021 The idea here is to confiscate the guns of American citizens who’ve been arbitrarily placed on various secret government no-fly and watch lists without any probable cause, any assumption of innocence, or any due process. David Harsanyi, National Review, 29 Mar. 2021 Indiana's red flag law allows police to confiscate guns from a person deemed dangerous to themselves or others. Casey Smith, Star Tribune, 6 May 2021 Anne Arundel County Police, who cited him for trespassing, refused the casino and regulatory agency representatives’ requests to confiscate the chips. Jeff Barker, baltimoresun.com, 1 Apr. 2021

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.

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First Known Use of confiscate

Adjective

circa 1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1552, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for confiscate

Adjective

Latin confiscatus, past participle of confiscare to confiscate, from com- + fiscus treasury

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Time Traveler for confiscate

Time Traveler

The first known use of confiscate was circa 1533

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Statistics for confiscate

Cite this Entry

“Confiscate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/confiscate. Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for confiscate

confiscate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of confiscate

: to take (something) away from someone especially as punishment or to enforce the law or rules

confiscate

verb
con·​fis·​cate | \ ˈkän-fə-ˌskāt How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \
confiscated; confiscating

Kids Definition of confiscate

: to seize by or as if by public authority Police confiscated the stolen car.

Other Words from confiscate

confiscation \ ˌkän-​fə-​ˈskā-​shən \ noun

confiscate

transitive verb
con·​fis·​cate | \ ˈkän-fə-ˌskāt How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \
confiscated; confiscating

Legal Definition of confiscate

: to seize without compensation as forfeited to the public treasury — compare criminal forfeiture

Note: 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.

Other Words from confiscate

confiscation \ ˌkän-​fə-​ˈskā-​shən How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ noun
confiscator \ ˈkän-​fə-​ˌskā-​tər How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ noun
confiscatory \ kən-​ˈfis-​kə-​ˌtōr-​ē How to pronounce confiscate (audio) \ adjective

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