dis·​pos·​sess | \ ˌdis-pə-ˈzes How to pronounce dispossess (audio) also -ˈses \
dispossessed; dispossessing; dispossesses

Definition of dispossess

transitive verb

: to put out of possession or occupancy dispossessed the nobles of their land

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Other Words from dispossess

dispossession \ ˌdis-​pə-​ˈze-​shən How to pronounce dispossession (audio) also  -​ˈse-​ \ noun
dispossessor \ ˌdis-​pə-​ˈze-​sər How to pronounce dispossessor (audio) also  -​ˈse-​ \ noun

Synonyms for dispossess


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Examples of dispossess in a Sentence

The land was settled by dispossessing the native people who lived here. opponents of gentrification claim that the process unfairly dispossesses poorer residents of their long-established homes
Recent Examples on the Web Such drawbacks tended to put off all but those whom circumstances had already disfavored: second sons, members of the down-at-heel Anglo-Irish gentry, dispossessed Scottish landowners who had backed the losing side in a rebellion against the crown. Christopher De Bellaigue, The New York Review of Books, "The Pillage of India," 27 May 2020 Canada went ahead in the 63rd minute after Scott Arfield dispossessed Michael Bradley on the edge of the center circle. BostonGlobe.com, "After 34 years, Canada beats US soccer - The Boston Globe," 16 Oct. 2019 There is simply no bottom to its depth of empathy for (and Donna Murphy’s vocal characterization of) the emotionally dispossessed. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Want to Listen to Musical Cast Albums? Our Top 10 Desert Island Picks," 15 Apr. 2020 The detention centers themselves are not just a response to an increase in migrant arrivals and asylum seekers, but also a key tool in terrifying and dissuading the politically dispossessed and refugees from seeking haven in this country. Philip Kennicott, chicagotribune.com, "Will future museums study our migrant cages?," 22 July 2019 In Belém, the capital city at the mouth of the Amazon River, their promise of miracle cures drew legions of the poor and dispossessed. Alex Cuadros, Harper's magazine, "“My Gang Is Jesus”," 20 Jan. 2020 After Bournemouth captain Steve Cook was forced off because of an injury, his replacement Simpson was dispossessed by Mane deep into his own half and Salah coolly slotted home on his 100th appearance for the club. Ben Morse, CNN, "Liverpool comes from behind to move within three wins of Premier League title," 7 Mar. 2020 In overtime, Khudobin was active playing the puck, knocking down David Perron behind the net after executing a sweep check on Robert Thomas to dispossess him of the puck. Matthew Defranks, Dallas News, "John Klingberg’s up and down night plays an integral role in Stars’ 4-3 shootout loss to the Blues," 1 Mar. 2020 Once in California, these dispossessed giants of German culture gravitated to the parties hosted by the charismatic and flirtatious Salka Viertel. Michael Dirda, Washington Post, "Turning a spotlight on the Hollywood doyenne who gave refuge to artists fleeing Hitler," 22 Jan. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dispossess

Middle French despossesser, from des- dis- + possesser to possess

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Time Traveler for dispossess

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

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Statistics for dispossess

Cite this Entry

“Dispossess.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dispossess. Accessed 7 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for dispossess


How to pronounce dispossess (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of dispossess

formal : to take land, possessions, etc., from (someone)


transitive verb
dis·​pos·​sess | \ ˌdis-pə-ˈzes How to pronounce dispossess (audio) \

Legal Definition of dispossess

: to put out of possession or occupancy — compare evict

Other Words from dispossess

dispossession \ -​ˈze-​shən How to pronounce dispossession (audio) \ noun
dispossessor \ -​ˈze-​sər How to pronounce dispossessor (audio) \ noun

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