misuse

verb
mis·​use | \-ˈyüz \
misused; misusing; misuses

Definition of misuse 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to use incorrectly : misapply misused his talents a word that is frequently misused

2 : abuse, mistreat misused his servants

misuse

noun
mis·​use | \-ˈyüs \

Definition of misuse (Entry 2 of 2)

: incorrect or improper use : misapplication

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Other Words from misuse

Verb

misuser noun

Examples of misuse in a Sentence

Verb

She's charged with misusing company funds. a word that is frequently misused

Noun

No refunds will be offered on products damaged by misuse. the warranty for this dryer is null and void if you subject the product to deliberate misuse
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

And whether some people lie to him, or misuse the money, is not the point. Eric Adler, kansascity, "Unmasked: Inside the miraculous, mad, mysterious life of Dr. MooMoo," 17 June 2018 Students, who are around 14 and 15 years old, are taught about the opioid epidemic by watching a video about fentanyl — a powerful painkiller that can turn deadly when misused or mixed with other drugs. Linley Sanders, Teen Vogue, "This School Is Teaching a "Safety-First" Drug Class," 17 Apr. 2018 While there’s no evidence that third-party Gmail add-on developers have misused data, just being able to view and read private emails seems like crossing a privacy boundary. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "Gmail app developers have been reading your emails," 2 July 2018 People can get fined about $700 for misusing the line, according to the Mounties. Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "This boy hated his salad so much he called 911 twice, and the Mounties showed up," 20 June 2018 Such children are more than twice as likely to develop cancer as an adult, have a 70 percent higher risk of cardiovascular disease, and are 10 times more likely to misuse drugs themselves. Daniel R. Taylor, Philly.com, "My patients are kids caught in the middle of the opioid crisis. Who speaks for them?," 14 June 2018 Both are often misused to pitch Angus beef with a Japanese steer somewhere in the bloodline. Dominic Armato, azcentral, "Dishonest menus: Diners, beware of 7 restaurant lies you may be swallowing right now," 13 June 2018 It was later learned that only five cards had shipped to the apartment and none was misused, The Tribune report. The Washington Post, NOLA.com, "Chicago man redirects all of UPS's mail to his 1-bedroom apartment," 11 May 2018 The Trump administration and lawmakers of both parties have been drawing attention to opioids, a range of pain-killing drugs that can be addictive when misused. Katie Zezima And Scott Higham, chicagotribune.com, "Drug executives to testify before Congress about role in opioid crisis," 8 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Reports of his mismanagement of the agency and misuse of taxpayer funds have surfaced with startling regularity in recent months, and spiraled into multiple investigations. Alana Abramson, Time, "EPA Head Scott Pruitt Resigns After Months of High-Profile Scandals," 5 July 2018 Federal prosecutors indicted a West Virginia justice Wednesday on 22 counts, including mail fraud and witness tampering, related to his alleged misuse of state vehicles and a historic desk. Kris Maher, WSJ, "West Virginia Justice Indicted for Fraud and Witness Tampering," 20 June 2018 This is not how private foundations should function and my office intends to hold the foundation accountable for its misuse of charitable assets. Danny Hakim, New York Times, "New York Attorney General Sues Trump Foundation After 2-Year Investigation," 14 June 2018 An audit released Thursday (May 31) reveals rampant mismanagement and misuse of money by the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission, The Advocate reports. Laura Mcknight, NOLA.com, "Audit reveals misuse of money, mismanagement by state Highway Safety Commission: report," 1 June 2018 Fonseca and his successor, Jose Arturo Sanchez-Macias, who resigned two months later, are the subjects of an ongoing state audit into possible fraud or misuse of funds. David Hernandez, sandiegouniontribune.com, "'We need to heal, then we need to build the future:' New San Ysidro superintendent feels hopeful," 15 May 2018 Twitter says there’s no evidence that any breach or misuse of the unmasked passwords occurred, but the company still recommends changing your password, including on third-party apps like Twitterrific and TweetDeck. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Read this, then change your Twitter password," 4 May 2018 But after allegations of influence peddling, bribe taking and misuse of government funds, she was forced from office. Author: Alan Cowell, Anchorage Daily News, "Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who fought apartheid with her husband, has died at 81," 2 Apr. 2018 Anything that has a small part, or could conceivably be broken down through use or misuse into small parts should be kept away from young children. Megan Friedman, Good Housekeeping, "These Moms Are Warning All Parents After Their Fidget Spinners Caught on Fire," 29 June 2017

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for misuse

Verb

Middle English, partly from mis- + usen to use; partly from Middle French mesuser to abuse, from Old French, from mes- + user to use

Noun

see misuse entry 1

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Statistics for misuse

Last Updated

6 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for misuse

The first known use of misuse was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for misuse

misuse

verb

English Language Learners Definition of misuse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to use (something) incorrectly

: to treat (someone) unfairly

misuse

noun

English Language Learners Definition of misuse (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of using something in an illegal, improper, or unfair way : incorrect use

misuse

verb
mis·​use | \mis-ˈyüz \
misused; misusing

Kids Definition of misuse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to put into action or service in a wrong way

misuse

noun
mis·​use | \mis-ˈyüs \

Kids Definition of misuse (Entry 2 of 2)

: incorrect or improper handling He was criticized for misuse of public funds.

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Comments on misuse

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