plunder

verb
plun·​der | \ˈplən-dər \
plundered; plundering\ ˈplən-​d(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of plunder 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to take the goods of by force (as in war) : pillage, sack invaders plundered the town

b : to take by force or wrongfully : steal, loot plundered artifacts from the tomb

2 : to make extensive use of as if by plundering : use or use up wrongfully plunder the land

intransitive verb

: to commit robbery or looting

plunder

noun

Definition of plunder (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of plundering : pillaging

2 : something taken by force, theft, or fraud : loot

3 chiefly dialectal : personal or household effects

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Other Words from plunder

Verb

plunderer \ ˈplən-​dər-​ər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for plunder

Noun

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 plunder in a Sentence

Verb

The village was plundered by the invading army. Thieves had long ago plundered the tomb. The soldiers continued plundering for days.

Noun

the plunder of the village All evidence suggested that the plunder of the tomb had happened long ago.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The government has estimated that the family plundered $10 billion, of which some $4 billion has been recovered. Jake Maxwell Watts, WSJ, "Imelda Marcos’s Graft Conviction Deals Blow to Philippine Dynasty’s Newfound Popularity," 9 Nov. 2018 Alexander-Arnold, who started both legs against Manchester City, has made six Champions League appearances so far this season and has a goal to his name as his team have plundered a record tally of 33 goals in this season's competition. SI.com, "Trent Alexander-Arnold Reveals How Being Targeted As 'Weak Link' Helped Him in UCL Win Over Man City," 12 Apr. 2018 The 24-year-old has plundered 100 Serie A goals for Inter since signing in 2013, 29 of which came in 2017/18 in the best season of his career to date. SI.com, "Chelsea on Alert as Inter Youth Chief Claims Club Need to Listen to Offers for Mauro Icardi," 5 June 2018 The military’s economic interests include the alleged involvement of security forces in Zimbabwe’s diamond-mining sector, which Mugabe himself once said had been plundered of billions of dollars in revenue. Washington Post, "After Mugabe, how free and fair will Zimbabwe’s vote be?," 4 July 2018 The archaeologists also surmise that the attackers were driven by politics and power, not mainly by robbery or plundering the village’s riches. New York Times, "A Massacre Frozen in Time: Skeletons in Sweden Reveal Ancient Attack," 25 Apr. 2018 Juventus remain on course for a seventh successive Scudetto, after plundering two late goals against an Inter side who played most of the match with ten men. SI.com, "Juventus Comes Back From 2-1 Deficit to Beat 10-Man Inter," 28 Apr. 2018 The military's economic interests include the alleged involvement of security forces in Zimbabwe's diamond-mining sector, which Mugabe himself once said had been plundered of billions of dollars in revenue. Christopher Torchia, Fox News, "After Mugabe, how free and fair will Zimbabwe's vote be?," 4 July 2018 Bayern acquired the former Borussia Dortmund star as a free agent in 2014 and have reaped the rewards after Lewandowski plundered 151 goals in less than 200 games for the club. SI.com, "Bayern President Makes Statement on Future of Striker Lewandowski Amidst Interest from Real Madrid," 11 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The powerful family has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, of human rights abuses and wanton plunder of national assets, during Marcos’ reign, which finally ended in 1989. Washington Post, "Sara Netanyahu preceded by avarice of other first wives," 21 June 2018 That is unusual: Centuries of plunder by treasure hunters and professional tomb raiders have spoiled many ancient Egyptian burial sites. Declan Walsh, New York Times, "Sarcophagus Found. Contents Unknown. (‘No Guessing, Please.’)," 13 July 2018 Whether for leisure, business, exploration, colonization, exploitation or plunder, humans have traveled the world for centuries and recorded their impressions in books and artworks. Susan Dunne, courant.com, "Travel-Themed Exhibit 'Wish You Were Here' In New Haven," 23 June 2018 The powerful family has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, of human rights abuses and wanton plunder of national assets, during Marcos' reign, which finally ended in 1989. Fox News, "Sara Netanyahu preceded by avarice of other first wives," 22 June 2018 The passive nature of reading allows a space for distance from the realities of slavery, violence, rape, plunder, mass incarceration and the daily toll of tightrope walking. Angela Helm, The Root, "Kamilah Forbes’ Beautiful Struggle: Bringing Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me to the Stage," 10 Apr. 2018 In Maeve's understanding, the Ghost Nation showed up in the name of violence, to attack, pillage and plunder. refinery29.com, "Westworld Season 2, Episode 8: Forget What You Think You Know," 11 June 2018 That was not surprising, given that the whole operation was overseen by an administration that holds government in contempt, seeing it as a source of obstruction or an opportunity for plunder, rather than a collection of vital services. Yvonne Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "After hurricane struck Puerto Rico, a second disaster was man-made," 2 June 2018 Given the massive scale of the plunder of black America, scholars have proposed reparations plans that are similarly wide-sweeping. Anne Branigin, The Root, "Cynthia Nixon Catches Heat for Calling Cannabis Licenses in Black Community a ‘Form of Reparations’," 8 May 2018

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

Verb

1632, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for plunder

Verb

German plündern

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Statistics for plunder

Last Updated

19 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for plunder

The first known use of plunder was in 1632

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More Definitions for plunder

plunder

verb

English Language Learners Definition of plunder

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to steal things from (a place, such as a city or town) especially by force

plunder

noun

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

: the act of stealing things from a place especially by force : the act of plundering something

: things that are stolen or taken by force especially during a war

plunder

verb
plun·​der | \ˈplən-dər \
plundered; plundering

Kids Definition of plunder

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to rob or steal especially openly and by force (as during war)

plunder

noun

Kids Definition of plunder (Entry 2 of 2)

: something stolen by force : loot

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Comments on plunder

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