hi·​jack | \ ˈhī-ˌjak How to pronounce hijack (audio) \
variants: or less commonly
hijacked also highjacked; hijacking also highjacking; hijacks also highjacks

Definition of hijack

transitive verb

1a : to steal by stopping a vehicle on the highway
b : to commandeer (a flying airplane) especially by coercing the pilot at gunpoint
c : to stop and steal from (a vehicle in transit)
d : kidnap
2a : to steal or rob as if by hijacking
b : to subject to extortion or swindling

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Other Words from hijack

hijack noun
hijacker noun

Synonyms for hijack



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Examples of hijack in a Sentence

He hijacked a truck, threatening the driver at gunpoint. A band of robbers hijacked the load of furs from the truck. A group of terrorists hijacked the plane. The organization has been hijacked by radicals.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Then in March, say its longtime operators, a Macedonian businessman hijacked it, leaving the Americans to watch helplessly as their page began operating under foreign control. Craig Timberg, Washington Post, "A popular Facebook page, ‘Vets for Trump,’ seemed to be a place for former military. But for months, Macedonians controlled it.," 17 Sep. 2019 Developing safe antivirals is difficult, however, because viruses hijack the host’s own cellular machinery in order to replicate, so interfering can also harm host cells. Simon Makin, Scientific American, "A Newly Identified Protein May Be the Key to Vanquishing the Common Cold," 17 Sep. 2019 Postal worker Mary Granados, originally from Ciudad Juarez, was driving her Odessa mail route and talking on the phone with her twin sister when the gunman hijacked her U.S. Postal Service van and killed her. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego truck driver among those shot in Odessa," 4 Sep. 2019 During the shooting, a gunman, described as a white male in his 30s, hijacked a postal van and a pickup truck and opened fire on residents, motorists and shoppers, police said on Saturday. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, "15-Year-Old Girl with 'Such a Big Heart' Killed in Texas Shootings Months After Her Quinceañera," 1 Sep. 2019 In plain English, Twitter suspected that the Chinese government created or hijacked a bunch of accounts to post propaganda defending Hong Kong's police and attacking Hong Kong's pro-democracy protestors. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "YouTube disables 210 accounts spreading misinformation about Hong Kong," 23 Aug. 2019 According to some headlines, however, including but not exclusive to this one by Football365, the deal is now in jeopardy due to Spurs considering an offer to rock the boat and hijack the deal for their benefit. SI.com, "Transfer Window: 6 of the Most Nonsensical Rumours of the Week," 2 Aug. 2019 On The Bachelorette Back at the house, the men are gathered 'round and still peeved at Luke P. for hijacking their time with Hannah with his selfish shenanigans. Joyce Chen, refinery29.com, "The Bachelorette Season 15 Episode 7: Free Falling," 25 June 2019 The plane, which was hijacked by terrorists intent on flying it to Washington, D.C., went down instead in a field in Pennsylvania thanks to Bingham and Beamer, who stormed the cockpit. Erin Schwartz, The Mercury News, "Students, vets mark 9-11 at Los Gatos memorial," 15 Sep. 2019

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

1923, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for hijack

origin unknown

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Statistics for hijack

Last Updated

14 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hijack

The first known use of hijack was in 1923

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English Language Learners Definition of hijack

: to stop and steal (a moving vehicle)
: to steal (something) from a moving vehicle that you have stopped
: to take control of (an aircraft) by force


hi·​jack | \ ˈhī-ˌjak\
hijacked; hijacking

Kids Definition of hijack

1 : to stop and steal or steal from a moving vehicle
2 : to take control of (an aircraft) by force

Other Words from hijack

hijacker noun
hi·​jack | \ ˈhī-ˌjak\

Legal Definition of hijack

: to seize possession or control of (a vehicle) from another person by force or threat of force specifically : to seize possession or control of (an aircraft) especially by forcing the pilot to divert the aircraft to another destination

Other Words from hijack

hijack noun
hijacker noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on hijack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hijack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hijack

Spanish Central: Translation of hijack

Nglish: Translation of hijack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hijack for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hijack

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to fake an opponent out of position

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