plagiarize

verb
pla·​gia·​rize | \ ˈplā-jə-ˌrīz also -jē-ə- How to pronounce plagiarize (audio) \
plagiarized; plagiarizing

Definition of plagiarize

transitive verb

: to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own : use (another's production) without crediting the source

intransitive verb

: to commit literary theft : present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source

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Other Words from plagiarize

plagiarizer noun

The Kidnapping Roots of Plagiarize

If schools wish to impress upon their students how serious an offense plagiarism is, they might start with an explanation of the word’s history. Plagiarize (and plagiarism) comes from the Latin plagiarius “kidnapper.” This word, derived from the Latin plaga (“a net used by hunters to catch game”), extended its meaning in Latin to include a person who stole the words, rather than the children, of another. When plagiarius first entered English in the form plagiary, it kept its original reference to kidnapping, a sense that is now quite obsolete.

Examples of plagiarize in a Sentence

He plagiarized a classmate's report. She plagiarized from an article she read on the Internet.

Recent Examples on the Web

Gibbs said the collection was a guide to women's health and it had been plagiarized from other similar writings during the same period. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "The Truly Baffling Case of the Ancient Voynich Manuscript," 12 Sep. 2019 And the one who defended Melania Trump plagiarizing former First Lady Michelle Obama. Michael Arceneaux, Essence, "Opinion: The African Americans For Trump Coalition Will Be Reaching Out To You Soon, Bless Their Hearts," 8 Aug. 2019 His campaign admitted to plagiarizing a policy document, and Biden initially held to his decades-long support for a rule that prevents federal money from being used for abortions, only to abruptly change amid an outcry led by Democratic women. John Wagner, Twin Cities, "Biden delivers scathing address on Trump, and the president fires back," 11 June 2019 Joe Biden reversing course on bad ideas and apparently plagiarizing policy on climate change might have escaped your attention, too. Graeme Mcmillan, WIRED, "While You Were Offline: Trump Had a Very Long Week in the UK," 9 June 2019 Biden's first campaign for president back in 1988 was derailed after he was accused of plagiarizing parts of a speech from a British politician in the Democratic debate. NBC News, "Biden camp fixes climate plan after reports it copied other writings," 4 June 2019 He was accused of plagiarizing in campaign speeches. Matt Flegenheimer, New York Times, "Biden’s First Run for President Was a Calamity. Some Missteps Still Resonate.," 3 June 2019 The Girls came out in June 2016 to wide acclaim — but the following year, her ex-boyfriend Chaz Reetz-Laiolo filed a lawsuit accusing her of plagiarizing the book from his work. Gabriella Paiella, The Cut, "Judge Dismisses Plagiarism Lawsuit Against The Girls Author Emma Cline," 2 July 2018 The fledgling group, which has just 36 members, is also encouraging universities to make greater efforts to detect plagiarism—such as by installing software that can detect plagiarized material—and to penalize those who copy. Linda Nordling, Science | AAAS, "In Nigeria, a battle against academic plagiarism heats up," 27 June 2018

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

1660, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for plagiarize

plagiary

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More Definitions for plagiarize

plagiarize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of plagiarize

: to use the words or ideas of another person as if they were your own words or ideas

plagiarize

verb
pla·​gia·​rize | \ ˈplā-jə-ˌrīz How to pronounce plagiarize (audio) \
plagiarized; plagiarizing

Legal Definition of plagiarize

transitive verb

: to copy and pass off (the expression of ideas or words of another) as one's own : use (another's work) without crediting the source the book contained plagiarized materialSmith v. Little, Brown & Co., 265 F. Supp. 451 (1965)

intransitive verb

: to present as new and original an idea or work derived from an existing source

Other Words from plagiarize

plagiarism \ -​ˌri-​zəm How to pronounce plagiarism (audio) \ noun
plagiarist \ -​rist How to pronounce plagiarist (audio) \ noun

History and Etymology for plagiarize

from plagiary plagiarist, from Latin plagiarius, literally, kidnapper, from plagium netting of game, kidnapping, from plaga net

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More from Merriam-Webster on plagiarize

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with plagiarize

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for plagiarize

Spanish Central: Translation of plagiarize

Nglish: Translation of plagiarize for Spanish Speakers

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