sabotage

noun
sab·​o·​tage | \ ˈsa-bə-ˌtäzh How to pronounce sabotage (audio) \

Definition of sabotage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : destruction of an employer's property (such as tools or materials) or the hindering of manufacturing by discontented workers
2 : destructive or obstructive action carried on by a civilian or enemy agent to hinder a nation's war effort
3a : an act or process tending to hamper or hurt
b : deliberate subversion

sabotage

verb
sabotaged; sabotaging

Definition of sabotage (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to practice sabotage on

Examples of sabotage in a Sentence

Noun

Angry workers were responsible for the sabotage of the machines. Officials have not yet ruled out sabotage as a possible cause of the crash.

Verb

They sabotaged the enemy's oil fields. The airplane crashed because it was sabotaged. The lawyer is trying to sabotage the case by creating confusion. The deal was sabotaged by an angry employee.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

All performed invaluable services in rescuing and sheltering British pilots and Resistance members on the run, gathering military and political intelligence, acting as couriers for weapons and secret messages, and organizing small-scale sabotage. Sonia Purnell, Twin Cities, "Sonia Purnell: What D-Day teaches us about the difficulty – and importance – of resistance," 6 June 2019 British cybersecurity officials warned U.K. phone carriers in April to stay clear of ZTE’s equipment and services, citing concern about potential sabotage from Beijing. Jacky Wong, WSJ, "U.S. Politics Is the ABC for ZTE," 13 June 2018 Gouthro says that Tripp didn’t sabotage Tesla or hack anything and that Musk knew this and sought to damage his reputation by spreading misinformation. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "New Report Claims Tesla Engaged in Lies, Threats to Stop Leaks," 13 Mar. 2019 The Venezuelan dictatorship is trying to use a nationwide power outage against its political opposition by claiming sabotage. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Pressure Mounts in Venezuela," 10 Mar. 2019 Previous acts of Trumpian sabotage of the ACA has made Navigator-type help even more important for some consumers. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "In another act of sabotage, Trump slashes Obamacare outreach funding to the bone," 10 July 2018 Democrats decry the latest changes as sabotage that will leave millions more Americans uninsured. Stephanie Armour, WSJ, "Trump’s Proposed ACA Rules Could Lift Costs for Millions of People," 17 Jan. 2019 Scott and Georgina sabotage Rufus and Lily’s wedding also there’s blackmail also Vanya impersonates a prince also Bree and Carter have a backstory? Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, "Every Single Episode of Gossip Girl, Ranked," 19 Sep. 2018 Don’t let your attempts to stay warm sabotage your eyes. Korin Miller, SELF, "8 Ways to Keep Winter From Making Your Dry Eyes Worse," 11 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Now Obamacare’s defenders are advancing the case that, in sabotaging the health care law, the Trump administration is acting unlawfully. Dylan Scott, Vox, "The new lawsuit to save Obamacare, explained," 14 Sep. 2018 The Nunes memo suggested that a group of politically biased law enforcement officials set out to sabotage Trump, with the Steele dossier as a key piece of evidence. Glenn Kessler, chicagotribune.com, "Trump's 'spygate' claim is latest off-target salvo at Russia probe," 2 June 2018 Eve is backed up, and occasionally sabotaged by her no-nonsense boss, Carolyn Martens (Fiona Shaw), and co-workers Elena (Kirby Howell-Baptiste) and Kenny (Sean Delaney). Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Killing Eve: Everything We Know So Far About Season 2," 24 Dec. 2018 The principal focus of the book is cyberwarfare — the use of techniques to sabotage the electronic or physical assets of an adversary — but its scope extends as well to other controversies that flow from advances in information technology. Paul R. Pillar, New York Times, "Cyberwarfare — the Latest Technology of Destruction," 19 June 2018 Actually, Taylor’s just unsatisfied in general, for reasons including a) Axe sabotaged their relationship with sweet, sweet Oscar and b) Axe has been gradually pushing Taylor away. refinery29.com, "Billions Season 3, Episode 11 Recap: "Forward Momentum Above All Things"," 4 June 2018 Sally Pipes: Blame Democrats -- not Trump -- for sabotaging ObamaCare. Fox News, "FOX NEWS FIRST: Mass shooting stuns Toronto, too early to determine if it's terror; Trump warns Iran," 23 July 2018 And then there were the conspiracy theories: The Skripal case was a plot to sabotage the World Cup; the British, the Slovaks, the Czech, the Swedes or even the Americans could be suspected of cooking up the stuff. Nathan Hodge, CNN, "Putin's missteps over the Russian spy murder," 27 Mar. 2018 In September, Lee Sang-hoon, the chairman of Samsung Electronic’s board of directors, was indicted on charges of sabotaging attempts by Samsung employees to form labor unions. Dan Seifert, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: Samsung," 26 Dec. 2018

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

Noun

1910, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1913, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sabotage

Noun

French, from saboter to clatter with sabots, botch, sabotage, from sabot

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Dictionary Entries near sabotage

sabora

saboraic

sabot

sabotage

saboteur

sabotier

sabra

Statistics for sabotage

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sabotage

The first known use of sabotage was in 1910

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More Definitions for sabotage

sabotage

noun

English Language Learners Definition of sabotage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act of destroying or damaging something deliberately so that it does not work correctly

sabotage

verb

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

: to destroy or damage (something) deliberately so that it does not work correctly
: to cause the failure of (something) deliberately

sabotage

noun
sab·​o·​tage | \ ˈsa-bə-ˌtäzh How to pronounce sabotage (audio) \

Kids Definition of sabotage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: deliberate destruction of or damage to property Angry workers used sabotage to disable the factory's machinery.

sabotage

verb
sabotaged; sabotaging

Kids Definition of sabotage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to damage or destroy on purpose : to engage in sabotage The country's water supply was sabotaged by the retreating enemy.

sabotage

noun
sab·​o·​tage | \ ˈsa-bə-ˌtäzh How to pronounce sabotage (audio) \

Legal Definition of sabotage

1 : the willful destruction of an employer's property or the hindering of normal operations by other means
2 : the injury, destruction, or knowingly defective production of materials, premises, or utilities used for war or national defense — compare criminal syndicalism, sedition

History and Etymology for sabotage

French, from saboter to clatter with wooden shoes, botch, sabotage, from sabot wooden shoe

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Comments on sabotage

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