con·​spire | \ kən-ˈspī(-ə)r How to pronounce conspire (audio) \
conspired; conspiring

Definition of conspire

intransitive verb

1a : to join in a secret agreement to do an unlawful or wrongful act or an act which becomes unlawful as a result of the secret agreement accused of conspiring to overthrow the government conspired to monopolize and restrict trade
b : scheme
2 : to act in harmony toward a common end Circumstances conspired to defeat his efforts. … the sun and the wind conspired to make splinters out of solid wood.— B. J. Oliphant

Examples of conspire in a Sentence

conspired to replace the leader with someone more easily influenced foul weather and airline foul-ups seemed to be conspiring to ruin our vacation
Recent Examples on the Web In the book, white supremacists conspire to bomb FBI headquarters and spark a wider war against the government. Marc Fisher, Anchorage Daily News, 27 Aug. 2022 Scalpers, cryptocurrency miners, and the underlying global chip shortage and supply chain problems will all conspire to keep GPU prices abnormally high in the short term. Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica, 29 Mar. 2022 Finally, there are other fears over proof-of-stake, notably the risk of a 51% attack—where bad actors conspire to take over more than half the computing power of the network, and tamper with the blockchain record to steal tokens. Taylor Locke, Fortune, 19 Aug. 2022 The emptiness of the vacuum in quantum theory belies a sea of particles—photons, electrons, gravitons, and more—that conspire to make empty space feel empty. Ahmed Almheiri, Scientific American, 17 Aug. 2022 Jumping the Broom shows the beauty and the drama of what can conspire when two people who love each other choose to love one another, despite coming from two very different socioeconomic backgrounds. Lynnette Nicholas, Essence, 29 July 2022 The big question is whether broader trends will conspire to drive rates back down. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, 8 July 2022 The world seems to conspire to thwart good intentions. John D. Sutter, CNN, 30 June 2022 After all, who could bet against a team led by a core group that made three consecutive trips to the final round despite circumstances that would conspire to prevent that from happening? Tom Layberger, Forbes, 28 June 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conspire.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of conspire

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for conspire

Middle English, from Anglo-French conspirer, from Latin conspirare to be in harmony, conspire, from com- + spirare to breathe

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Time Traveler for conspire

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The first known use of conspire was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

5 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Conspire.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for conspire


con·​spire | \ kən-ˈspīr How to pronounce conspire (audio) \
conspired; conspiring

Kids Definition of conspire

1 : to make an agreement with others especially in secret to do an unlawful act
2 : to act together Events conspired to spoil our plans.


intransitive verb
con·​spire | \ kən-ˈspīr How to pronounce conspire (audio) \
conspired; conspiring

Legal Definition of conspire

: to join in a conspiracy — compare solicit

History and Etymology for conspire

Latin conspirare to be in harmony, to join in an unlawful agreement, from com- together + spirare to breathe

More from Merriam-Webster on conspire

Nglish: Translation of conspire for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of conspire for Arabic Speakers

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