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

Examples of squander in a Sentence


He vowed not to squander this opportunity. squandered all her money gambling in casinos

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The pace of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane was also proving to be a headache for Napoli on the counterattack, with the Senegalese forward squandering a glorious opportunity to play his teammate in on goal. Matias Grez, CNN, "Liverpool stunned by Napoli late goals in the Champions League," 17 Sep. 2019 With virtually no pass rush and Brees picking them apart in the second half, the Texans' defense was extremely vulnerable and contributed heavily to squandering a 14-3 halftime lead. Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle, "Aaron Colvin has rough start to 2nd season with Texans," 9 Sep. 2019 The Hammers dominated proceedings and missed plenty of chances with Andriy Yarmolenko hitting the post, and both Sebastian Haller and Felipe Anderson squandering easy opportunities. SI.com, "Norwich Premier League Month in Review: August - Best Player, Worst Performance & Overall Rating," 8 Sep. 2019 He was backed first by outfielder Victor Reyes, who rescued the Tigers (36-81) from nearly squandering a prime scoring opportunity in the bottom of the second inning. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers observations: Edwin Jackson, two youngsters star in 3-2 win," 14 Aug. 2019 That came shortly after the Yankees had squandered an opportunity of their own in the half inning before by hitting into a triple play. Betsy Helfand, Twin Cities, "Twins turn triple play, outslug Yankees in series opener," 22 July 2019 The polarizing franchise puck-stopper will be penalized for Boston squandering a golden opportunity to hoist the Cup. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "Once again, an imperfect finish for Tuukka Rask," 13 June 2019 As a longtime kayak angler, Mr. Ferrell was used to sitting while unknowingly paddling over fish, squandering opportunities for a stealthy approach. John Clarke, WSJ, "The New Fishing Vessel of Choice? Stand-Up Paddleboards," 15 Aug. 2018 Throughout the Trump presidency—which has engendered (much more righteous) fury among the Democratic base—that anger has been squandered. Libby Watson, The New Republic, "Brett Kavanaugh Has Democrats Running Scared," 17 Sep. 2019

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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Statistics for squander

Last Updated

7 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for squander

The first known use of squander was in 1536

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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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More from Merriam-Webster on squander

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with squander

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for squander

Spanish Central: Translation of squander

Nglish: Translation of squander for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of squander for Arabic Speakers

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