extortionate

adjective

ex·​tor·​tion·​ate ik-ˈstȯr-sh(ə-)nət How to pronounce extortionate (audio)
1
: characterized by extortion
2
: excessive, exorbitant
extortionate prices
extortionately adverb

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web It’s about divorce; it’s about the extortionate cost of dance class. Amanda Whiting, Vulture, 3 Oct. 2021 Of course, with the defensive midfielder being English, his price tag is already extortionate, which is putting off several Premier League sides from making a move early in the transfer window. Liam Canning, Forbes, 28 May 2021 The power imbued in the minority to stop extortionate generational bills — the cost now estimated somewhere over $6 trillion — is just as valid as the power the majority uses to propose them. David Harsanyi, National Review, 3 May 2021 Given the extortionate cost of flying private (a one-way flight from Delhi to Abu Dhabi can cost as much as $20,000), many of the not-quite-so-wealthy Indians are flying to the nearest country that will take them. Ollie Williams, Forbes, 27 Apr. 2021 In 1887 he was invited to resume the presidency of the Northern Pacific but drove it into receivership by loading it with extortionate loans to himself. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 2 Mar. 2021 The ban -- which only applies to foreign nationals, not American citizens -- has triggered widespread confusion, extortionate re-booking fees and frantic Googling. Eliza Mackintosh, CNN, 13 Mar. 2020 Americans are paying extortionate amounts of money for testing and quarantine. Isabella Steger, Quartz, 5 Mar. 2020 Nimble startups nibbled away at conventional lenders’ market share in the extortionate business of moving money across borders. The Economist, 25 Dec. 2019 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1747, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of extortionate was in 1747

Dictionary Entries Near extortionate

Cite this Entry

“Extortionate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/extortionate. Accessed 26 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

extortionate

adjective
ex·​tor·​tion·​ate ik-ˈstȯr-sh(ə-)nət How to pronounce extortionate (audio)
1
: marked by extortion
2
: extremely high : exorbitant
extortionate prices
extortionately adverb
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