expropriate

Use the verb expropriate to describe the act of taking people's property, usually by a government. If you really like your neighbor's house, you may wish you could expropriate the property.

To correctly pronounce expropriate, say "ex-PRO-pree-ate." It sounds a lot like another verb, appropriate and has a similar meaning. That's because of their shared Latin root proprius, which means "own." Expropriate is typically used to describe taking property — rather than smaller possessions — and a government or other official organization is usually the one doing the taking. For example, a state may expropriate property in order to build a new road.

Definitions of expropriate
  1. verb
    deprive of possessions
    “The Communist government expropriated the landowners”
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    type of:
    deprive, divest, strip
    take away possessions from someone
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