loot

1 of 2

noun

1
: goods usually of considerable value taken in war : spoils
The soldiers helped themselves to any loot that they could find.
2
: something held to resemble goods of value seized in war: such as
a
: something appropriated illegally often by force or violence
the thieves' loot
b
: illicit gains by public officials
c
: money
would not … spend all that loot on herLangston Hughes
3
: the action of looting
general loot of church landHilaire Belloc

loot

2 of 2

verb

looted; looting; loots

transitive verb

1
a
: to plunder or sack in war
b
: to rob especially on a large scale and usually by violence or corruption
2
: to seize and carry away by force especially in war

intransitive verb

: to engage in robbing or plundering especially in war
looter noun
Choose the Right Synonym for loot

spoil, plunder, booty, prize, loot mean something taken from another by force or craft.

spoil, more commonly spoils, applies to what belongs by right or custom to the victor in war or political contest.

the spoils of political victory

plunder applies to what is taken not only in war but in robbery, banditry, grafting, or swindling.

a bootlegger's plunder

booty implies plunder to be shared among confederates.

thieves dividing up their booty

prize applies to spoils captured on the high seas or territorial waters of the enemy.

the wartime right of seizing prizes at sea

loot applies especially to what is taken from victims of a catastrophe.

picked through the ruins for loot

Examples of loot in a Sentence

Noun After raiding the town, the soldiers helped themselves to any loot that they could find. The thieves got a lot of loot in the robbery. He made a lot of loot selling cars. Verb The soldiers were looting every house that they came to. Soldiers swept through the territory, looting, burning, and killing.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
There's nothing like a few decades of aging to make the prospect of sinking hundreds of hours into a loot grind seem less appealing. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, 14 June 2024 Warzone Mobile's Battle Royale mode allows up to 120 real players to play at once and has a Mobile Royale mode that allows for faster gameplay with better loot. Carlie Procell, USA TODAY, 21 Mar. 2024
Verb
After changing hands among various European aristocrats, the painting was looted by Napoleonic troops during the French occupation of Vienna in 1809 and taken to Paris. Jack Guy, CNN, 3 July 2024 With Petrus elsewhere, three men and a teenage boy arrive at Lucy’s door, loot the house, kill all but one of her dogs, attempt to set David on fire and then gang rape her. Lauren Leblanc, Los Angeles Times, 1 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for loot 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'loot.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun and Verb

Hindi & Urdu lūṭ; akin to Sanskrit luṇṭati he plunders

First Known Use

Noun

circa 1788, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1845, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of loot was circa 1788

Dictionary Entries Near loot

Cite this Entry

“Loot.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loot. Accessed 17 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

loot

1 of 2 noun
: something stolen or taken by force

loot

2 of 2 verb
looter noun

Legal Definition

loot

transitive verb
1
: to rob especially during or following a catastrophe (as war, riot, or natural disaster)
2
: to rob especially on a large scale and usually by violence or corruption

intransitive verb

: to engage in robbing especially after a catastrophe
looter noun

More from Merriam-Webster on loot

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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