misuse

verb
mis·​use | \ ˌmis-ˈyüz How to pronounce misuse (audio) \
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 | \ ˌmis-ˈyüs How to pronounce misuse (audio) \

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 Last session, the Senate also passed the senators' legislation that sought to strengthen penalties against those who steal or misuse the benefits of federal retirees. Yvonne Wingett Sanchez, The Arizona Republic, "Sen. Kyrsten Sinema new chair of Senate panel on border, government efficiency," 19 Feb. 2021 Like cannabis, nitrous oxide is responsible for almost none of the overdose or misuse drug deaths each year, but its use can lead to death. New York Times, "Nitrous Nation," 30 Jan. 2021 Margaret Hunter pleaded guilty in 2019 to one count of conspiracy to misuse campaign funds for personal expenses, the White House said. Kevin Johnson, USA TODAY, "Trump pardons former campaign chairman Paul Manafort along with Charles Kushner, other allies," 23 Dec. 2020 Arguably, that’s because Americans are far more likely than Swedes to think that recipients of economic transfers don’t deserve them or will misuse them. Kevin Vallier, WSJ, "Why Are Americans So Distrustful of Each Other?," 17 Dec. 2020 His wife, Margaret Hunter, pleaded guilty in June 2019 of conspiring with her husband to misuse more than $250,000 in campaign money on personal expenses such as travel, groceries, fast food and private school tuition. Andrew Dyer, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Former Rep. Duncan Hunter to serve sentence at West Texas prison camp," 16 Oct. 2020 Support economic relief for those who are unemployed during the pandemic. Support the Violence Against Women Act and common-sense legislation to keep guns out of the hands of those who would misuse them. Tawnja Zahradka, Star Tribune, "Emmer is not a leader for all Minnesotans," 15 Oct. 2020 But the Rosen trade proved to be a waste of resources — a second- and fifth-round pick — something the Dolphins couldn’t afford to misuse during their extensive rebuilding effort. Safid Deen, sun-sentinel.com, "Dolphins could have drafted this star WR instead of acquiring Josh Rosen. Now, they must defend him on Sunday.," 2 Oct. 2020 And, when taken consistently for too long, patients may misuse benzodiazepines, which is especially dangerous when taken with some other types of drugs. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "The FDA Will Require a New Boxed Safety Warning for Benzodiazepines," 25 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There might even be a place for them in the home, if researchers can find a way to minimize misuse. New York Times, "Could a Smell Test Screen People for Covid?," 19 Jan. 2021 Still, few believe social media companies are prepared to take a tougher line against misuse of their platforms globally. Shashank Bengali, Los Angeles Times, "Facebook banned Trump. Leaders who say worse often go unpunished," 15 Jan. 2021 The media’s misuse of data and statistics is pretty much a daily occurrence. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: COVID deaths, death penalty, Enbridge Line 3, automation, the glass ceiling," 7 Dec. 2020 From the outside, the building seems just one of the many in central Baghdad that are decaying from years of misuse — silent, windows shut. Samya Kullab, Star Tribune, "In a Baghdad bar, a Syrian serves cocktails to fix war woes," 3 Feb. 2021 The suspects were apprehended in Westlake and face charges of misuse of a credit card, theft, criminal damaging and theft from a motor vehicle. Cheryl Higley, cleveland, "Car stolen, another broken into on Pamilla Circle: Avon Lake police blotter," 30 Jan. 2021 If extradited, Assange, 49, would face a maximum of 175 years in prison if convicted on 17 espionage charges and one charge of computer misuse. NBC News, "WikiLeaks' Julian Assange cannot be extradited to the U.S. to face espionage charges, U.K. court rules," 4 Jan. 2021 Concerns of data misuse apply to official channels as well. Andy Greenberg, Wired, "The iOS Covid App Ecosystem Has Become a Privacy Minefield," 13 Nov. 2020 As president, Lee was the student liaison to the campus administration during a time of upheaval that led to the departure of Chancellor Linda Katehi on charges of misuse of student funds. Sam Whiting, SFChronicle.com, "At 25, California’s youngest state legislator gets running start in San Jose," 8 Nov. 2020

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 and Noun

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

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Time Traveler for misuse

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for misuse

Last Updated

25 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Misuse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misuse. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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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 How to pronounce misuse (audio) \
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 How to pronounce misuse (audio) \

Kids Definition of misuse (Entry 2 of 2)

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

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