se·​ques·​tra·​tion | \ˌsē-kwə-ˈstrā-shən, ˌse-;(ˌ)sē-ˌkwe-\

Definition of sequestration 

1 : the act of sequestering : the state of being sequestered a jury in sequestration

2a : a legal writ authorizing a sheriff or commissioner to take into custody the property of a defendant who is in contempt until the orders of a court are complied with

b : a deposit whereby a neutral depositary agrees to hold property in litigation and to restore it to the party to whom it is adjudged to belong

3 : the practice of imposing automatic government spending reductions by withholding appropriations by a fixed percentage that applies uniformly to all government programs except those exempted

4 : the process of sequestering something or the result of being sequestered While the idea is a shift from traditional thinking on dealing with the greenhouse effect, carbon sequestration has been going on in nature for millennia in oceans and vegetation.— Tom Rickey

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Examples of sequestration in a Sentence

the sequestration of a jury During their sequestration, jurors were not allowed to speak to reporters.

Recent Examples on the Web

Congress ended years of sequestration cuts that had damaged the military more than any enemy in the field, as Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has put it. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "A Consequential Congress," 1 Nov. 2018 That’s the logic behind bioenergy with carbon capture and sequestration (BECCS). Umair Irfan, Vox, "Sucking CO2 out of the atmosphere, explained," 24 Oct. 2018 During that time, public schools have seen their revenue shrink, with federal funding dropping 19.5 percent, particularly after Congress’ across-the-board spending cuts known as budget sequestration took effect in 2013. Emmarie Huetteman, Washington Post, "Unwieldy Health Costs Often Stand Between Teachers And Fatter Paychecks," 18 June 2018 An investigation has been open for kidnapping and sequestration, attempted homicide and violence with a weapon. Sylvie Corbet, Fox News, "Suspect in Paris hostage-taking placed in psychiatric unit," 13 June 2018 Interestingly, a bipartisan effort to increase and extend tax credits for carbon sequestration passed through this budget. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Budget deal has tax credit extensions for nuclear, fuel cells, carbon capture," 9 Feb. 2018 The sequestration part of CCS is still looming out there. David Roberts, Vox, "That natural gas power plant with no carbon emissions or air pollution? It works.," 1 June 2018 Hitting these goals will involve a wide range of investments in everything from district heating to carbon sequestration. David Roberts, Vox, "The Netherlands contemplates the world’s toughest climate law," 6 July 2018 And there’s no carbon price anywhere in the world big enough to make sequestration pay off. David Roberts, Vox, "Sucking carbon out of the air won’t solve climate change," 14 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for sequestration

The first known use of sequestration was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of sequestration

: the act of keeping a person or group apart from other people or the state of being kept apart from other people

law : the act of taking someone's property until a debt has been paid


se·​ques·​tra·​tion | \ˌsēk-wəs-ˈtrā-shən, ˌsek-, si-ˌkwes-\

Medical Definition of sequestration 

1 : the formation of a sequestrum

2 : the process of sequestering or result of being sequestered


se·​ques·​tra·​tion | \ˌsē-kwəs-ˈtrā-shən, ˌse- \

Legal Definition of sequestration 

1 : the act of sequestering : the state of being sequestered

2a : a writ authorizing an official (as a sheriff) to take into custody the property of a defendant usually to enforce a court order, to exercise quasi in rem jurisdiction, or to preserve the property until judgment is rendered

b in the civil law of Louisiana : a deposit in which a neutral person agrees to hold property in dispute and to restore it to the party to whom it is determined to belong

3 : the cancellation of funds for expenditure or obligation in order to enforce federal budget limitations set by law

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