squan·​der | \ ˈskwän-dər How to pronounce squander (audio) \
squandered; squandering\ ˈskwän-​d(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce squander (audio) \

Definition of squander

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to spend extravagantly or foolishly : dissipate, waste squandered a fortune
2 : to cause to disperse : scatter
3 : to lose (something, such as an advantage or opportunity) through negligence or inaction



Definition of squander (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of squandering

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Other Words from squander


squanderer \ ˈskwän-​dər-​ər How to pronounce squander (audio) \ noun

Examples of squander in a Sentence

Verb He vowed not to squander this opportunity. squandered all her money gambling in casinos
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb A night after going three for 16 while leaving 14 runners on base in their opening-day loss, the Dodgers didn’t squander many opportunities. Los Angeles Times, "Trevor Bauer flirts with no-hitter, gets plenty of support to win Dodgers debut," 2 Apr. 2021 After losing that game against River Hill (6-1) earlier this season, along with an overtime defeat against Marriotts Ridge that saw Glenelg (5-2) squander a second-half lead, Baehr said the team needed a result like this one. Jacob Calvin Meyer, baltimoresun.com, "Glenelg field hockey hands River Hill first loss | Howard County sports roundup," 29 Mar. 2021 The Phillies walked in four consecutive runs, giving the Tigers a 9-8 lead that right-hander Ethan DeCaster didn't squander. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers rally for 8-run eighth inning in 9-8 win over Philadelphia Phillies," 27 Mar. 2021 Phoenix didn't squander the opportunity to beat the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers without their two superstars. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, "Phoenix Suns top LeBron James-less Lakers, secure season series," 21 Mar. 2021 Anaheim coach Dallas Eakins was unhappy seeing his team squander a two-goal advantage. Joe Reedy, Star Tribune, "Labanc, Donato score in shootout to lift Sharks over Ducks," 6 Feb. 2021 Bates-Diop was determined not to squander the chance the Spurs’ bad fate had afforded him. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "Spurs' COVID outbreak means opportunity for unknowns," 26 Feb. 2021 One more step that could be helpful in the next case: a restraining order so that the ex could not squander the money between receipt and judgment. Dallas News, "The way out of the ERISA trap: A tale of divorce, death and money," 24 Jan. 2021 Iran watchers are wary that President-elect Joe Biden may dive head-first into rejoining the Iran nuclear deal and squander the leverage created by his predecessor's tough policies that kept Iran’s regional aggression in check in recent years. Abraham Mahshie, Washington Examiner, "Biden should maintain Trump’s Iran sanctions while pursuing nuclear agreement, experts say," 19 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Every day Trump and the Republicans squander brings us a day closer to the election and a likely Biden presidency. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, "The Surprising Boredom of Trump’s Circus Show," 26 Aug. 2020

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


1536, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1709, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for squander


origin unknown

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Time Traveler for squander

Time Traveler

The first known use of squander was in 1536

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Statistics for squander

Last Updated

5 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Squander.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/squander. Accessed 11 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for squander



English Language Learners Definition of squander

: to use (something) in a foolish or wasteful way


squan·​der | \ ˈskwän-dər How to pronounce squander (audio) \
squandered; squandering

Kids Definition of squander

: to spend foolishly : waste She squandered her allowance. Don't squander this opportunity.

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