conspiracy

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noun con·spir·a·cy \ kən-ˈspir-ə-sē \

Definition of conspiracy

plural conspiracies
1 :the act of conspiring together
  • They were accused of conspiracy to commit murder.
2 a :an agreement among conspirators
  • uncovered a conspiracy against the government
b :a group of conspirators
  • a conspiracy made up of disgruntled aristocrats

Examples of conspiracy in a Sentence

  1. The CIA uncovered a conspiracy against the government.

  2. They were accused of conspiracy to commit murder.

Recent Examples of conspiracy from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of conspiracy

Middle English conspiracie, from Latin conspirare — see conspire

conspiracy Synonyms

Synonym Discussion of conspiracy

plot, intrigue, machination, conspiracy, cabal mean a plan secretly devised to accomplish an evil or treacherous end. plot implies careful foresight in planning a complex scheme.
    • an assassination plot
intrigue suggests secret underhanded maneuvering in an atmosphere of duplicity.
    • backstairs intrigue
machination implies a contriving of annoyances, injuries, or evils by indirect means.
    • the machinations of a party boss
conspiracy implies a secret agreement among several people usually involving treason or great treachery.
    • a conspiracy to fix prices
cabal typically applies to political intrigue involving persons of some eminence.
    • a cabal among powerful senators


CONSPIRACY Defined for English Language Learners

conspiracy

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noun

Definition of conspiracy for English Language Learners

  • : a secret plan made by two or more people to do something that is harmful or illegal

  • : the act of secretly planning to do something that is harmful or illegal


CONSPIRACY Defined for Kids

conspiracy

play
noun con·spir·a·cy \ kən-ˈspir-ə-sē \

Definition of conspiracy for Students

plural conspiracies
1 :a secret agreement to do something harmful or unlawful
2 :the act of plotting with others to do something harmful or unlawful
3 :a group of conspirators

Law Dictionary

conspiracy

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noun con·spir·a·cy \ kən-ˈspir-ə-sē \

legal Definition of conspiracy

plural conspiracies
1 :an agreement between two or more people to commit an act prohibited by law or to commit a lawful act by means prohibited by law; also :the crime or tort of participating in a conspiracy — compare substantive crime
Note: Some states require an overt act in addition to the agreement to constitute conspiracy.
chain conspiracy
:a conspiracy in which the conspirators act separately and successively (as in distributing narcotics)
civil conspiracy
:a conspiracy that is not prosecuted as a crime but that forms the grounds for a lawsuit
criminal conspiracy
:a conspiracy prosecuted as a crime
2 :a group of conspirators

Origin and Etymology of conspiracy

Latin conspiratio, from conspirare to conspire — see conspire



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