Definition of subversion
subversionaryplay \-zhə-ˌner-ē, -shə-\ adjective
subversiveplay \-ˈvər-siv, -ziv\ adjective or noun
Recent Examples of subversion from the Web
Since the Supreme Tribunal and the executive’s subversion of constitutional order, all eyes have turned towards Ortega.
Perhaps nothing illustrated this subversion better than the outlandish dust jackets doctored by playwright Joe Orton and his lover, Kenneth Halliwell.
Defendants found guilty of subversion can face up to life in prison, although shorter sentences are more common.
Yahoo turned over a draft e-mail from one of its users to Chinese authorities, who used the information to jail the man on subversion charges, according to the verdict from his 2003 trial released Wednesday by a rights group.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'subversion'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Subversion is literally the "turning over" of something. In the 1950s and '60s, many people worried about communist subversion of the U.S. government, though they often saw subversive activities where none existed. Nondemocratic governments often claim that anyone who disagrees with them or joins a demonstration is a subversive. But subversion isn't always quite so serious a matter; when words like weekend, sandwich, job, *and *camping started being used by the French, for example, some of them began claiming that America was subverting their language.
Origin and Etymology of subversion
Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin subversion-, subversio, from Latin subvertere
First Known Use: 14th century
Legal Definition of subversion
: a systematic attempt to overthrow or undermine a government or political system by persons working from within; also : the crime of committing acts in furtherance of such an attempt
subversionary\-zhə-ˌner-ē\ play adjective
subversive\-ˈvər-siv\ play adjective or noun
Seen and Heard
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