ex·​pro·​pri·​a·​tion | \ (ˌ)ek-ˌsprō-prē-ˈā-shən How to pronounce expropriation (audio) \

Definition of expropriation

: the act of expropriating or the state of being expropriated specifically : the action of the state in taking or modifying the property rights of an individual in the exercise of its sovereignty

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Examples of expropriation in a Sentence

the development of the colony involved expropriation of large tracts of fertile farmland from the natives
Recent Examples on the Web Wilhelm, who was the most senior member of the dynasty in Germany in the 1920s and 1930s and the owner of the Hohenzollern properties at the time of the Soviet expropriation. David Motadel, The New York Review of Books, "What Do the Hohenzollerns Deserve?," 26 Feb. 2020 Mugabe devastated commercial farming with his expropriations, but the country remains a large tobacco producer. Washington Post, "Why Post-Mugabe Zimbabwe Remains Mired in Misery," 20 Sep. 2019 While expropriation proceedings were still underway in 2016, the government announced plans to demolish Hitler’s birthplace. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Hitler’s Birthplace Will Be Converted Into a Police Station," 21 Nov. 2019 Such expropriation would surely chill incentives to innovate and to allocate capital efficiently. The Economist, "Billionaires are only rarely policy failures," 9 Nov. 2019 The main energy legacy of president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who is now Fernandez’s vice president, is her 2012 expropriation of YPF, an oil company that had been privatized in the 1990s. Max De Haldevang, Quartz, "Latin America’s new leftists are choosing oil despite renewables boom," 5 Feb. 2020 But committing to deliver value to all is to undertake a journey fraught with potential for employee revolt, expropriation, litigation, and disinvestment. Alison Taylor, Quartz at Work, "2020 will be the year when corporate activism and global political risk converge," 5 Feb. 2020 The violence of that moment of early modern enclosure and expropriation no doubt echoes down to the present, but that can explain only part of modern-day inequality. Adam Tooze, The New York Review of Books, "How ‘Big Law’ Makes Big Money," 28 Jan. 2020 Roche has worked to link—especially to credulous international audiences—the issue of farm attacks with the threat of land expropriation. James Pogue, Harper's magazine, "The Myth of White Genocide," 10 June 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for expropriation

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

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Last Updated

19 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Expropriation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expropriation. Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on expropriation

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for expropriation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with expropriation

Britannica English: Translation of expropriation for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about expropriation

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