pirate

noun
pi·​rate | \ ˈpī-rət How to pronounce pirate (audio) \

Definition of pirate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: one who commits or practices piracy

pirate

verb
pirated; pirating

Definition of pirate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to commit piracy on
2 : to take or appropriate by piracy: such as
a : to reproduce without authorization especially in infringement of copyright
b : to lure away from another employer by offers of betterment

intransitive verb

: to commit or practice piracy

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from pirate

Noun

piratical \ pə-​ˈra-​ti-​kəl How to pronounce piratical (audio) , pī-​ \ adjective
piratically \ pə-​ˈra-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce piratically (audio) , pī-​ \ adverb

Examples of pirate in a Sentence

Noun

the famous pirate Jean Lafitte A software pirate made bootleg copies of the computer program.

Verb

He was accused of pirating their invention. using pirated software that was subject to copyright
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At Disneyland, a number of the pirates in the background are still A1s. Matt Blitz, Popular Mechanics, "The A1000 Is Disney's Advanced Animatronic Bringing the Galaxy's Edge Star Wars Theme Park To Life," 28 Feb. 2019 Tampa Bay’s Raymond James Stadium ($229 million) comes with its own pirate ship. Adam Bonislawski, WSJ, "The Multimillion-Dollar ‘Homes’ NFL Fans Visit Almost Weekly," 24 Oct. 2018 The nautical theme extended to a seating area inside a faux pirate ship. Sharon Boorstin, latimes.com, "Bounce in a dune buggy on a sandy weekend escape to Pismo Beach," 7 June 2018 The two-alarm fire began at about 2:40 p.m. on April 9, about 15 feet from the replica 18th-century pirate ship that serves as the attraction’s centerpiece. Marco Santana, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Welding gun sparked Pirates Dinner Theater fire, officials say," 30 May 2018 Johnson, tall and ripped, young and rich, striding the fairways with the swagger of a pirate-ship captain. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, "Sunlight, spotlight shine on unheralded Ted Potter Jr.," 10 Feb. 2018 Later there were pirates, runaways, smugglers and the occasional aristocrat. Michael Pye, New York Times, "Pirates, Runaways, Smugglers and the Occasional Aristocrat," 11 May 2018 Last month, the ride reopened with the redhead, now a pirate, toting a rifle while chickens are auctioned off instead. Gabrielle Russon, OrlandoSentinel.com, "The Queen is now in charge at Medieval Times," 21 Apr. 2018 Sharing the same jailhouse and fate is Stephen Bonnet (Ed Speleers), the pirate who robbed the Frasers and raped their daughter Brianna. Outlander Fan, Marie Claire, "'Outlander' Season 4 Episode 12 Recap: 5 Biggest Takeaways," 21 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In an ironic twist, though, the makers of that firmware have introduced anti-piracy code to prevent people from pirating their own work. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Switch pirates don’t want you to pirate their piracy-enabling firmware," 28 June 2018 These include opening up more Chinese sectors to foreign investment, punishing companies that pirate foreign technology and lowering import tariffs on high-tech goods. Doug Cameron, WSJ, "How the U.S. Can Protect Corporate America’s Tech Secrets From China," 10 Jan. 2019 Online, more than 800,000 people paid to watch it for $10 a stream — a respectable number, even with the million or so people who pirated the fight on Twitch. Megan Farokhmanesh, The Verge, "Logan Paul’s redemption arc is proceeding exactly as planned," 29 Aug. 2018 This year, Sony, which owns World Cup broadcast rights in India, has already issued a warning to potential streaming sites that may try and pirate 2018 matches. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "World Cup’s soccer highlights will put social media’s copyright tools to the test," 15 June 2018 FlightSimLab owner Lefteris Kalamaras actually confirmed that this was the case in a forum post, but asserted that this functionality was only turned against users running software that the company has deemed to be pirated. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "Flight Simulator Software Packed in Password-Stealing Malware to Battle Piracy," 20 Feb. 2018 SurfSafe will also help users to identify whether an image was pirated from another site and flag visuals that have been photoshopped. Rachel Gutman, The Atlantic, "A Web Tool That Lets People Choose Their Own ‘Sources of Truth’," 29 June 2018 The lawsuit against Dragon Media says the box and the software provided by Dragon Media greatly simplify the process of viewing pirated video. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "“Free TV” box lawyer says video industry is “digging its own grave”," 17 Jan. 2018 The photos are childhood snapshots of Ms. Perry and her twin brother, Sandy, who was one of the N.C.A.A. basketball players whose likenesses were pirated, just a few years ago, by the video game company E.A. Sports. Martha Schwendener, Jason Farago And Will Heinrich, New York Times, "What to See in New York Art Galleries This Week," 24 Jan. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of pirate

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1577, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pirate

Noun

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin pirata, from Greek peiratēs, from peiran to attempt — more at fear

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pirate

Statistics for pirate

Last Updated

12 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pirate

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for pirate

pirate

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pirate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone who attacks and steals from a ship at sea
: someone who illegally copies a product or invention without permission
: a person or organization that illegally makes television or radio broadcasts

pirate

verb

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

: to illegally copy (something) without permission

pirate

noun
pi·​rate | \ ˈpī-rət How to pronounce pirate (audio) \

Kids Definition of pirate

: a robber of ships at sea : a person who commits piracy

pirate

noun
pi·​rate | \ ˈpī-rət How to pronounce pirate (audio) \

Legal Definition of pirate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who commits piracy

pirate

verb
pirated; pirating

Legal Definition of pirate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to take or appropriate by piracy especially : to copy, distribute, or use without authorization especially in infringement of copyright the pirated software pirating cable signals

intransitive verb

: to commit piracy — compare bootleg

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on pirate

What made you want to look up pirate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by a state of overwhelming emotion

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!