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[uh-proh-pree-ey-shuh n] /əˌproʊ priˈeɪ ʃən/
the act of appropriating.
anything appropriated for a special purpose, especially money.
an act of a legislature authorizing money to be paid from the treasury for a specified use.
the money thus authorized:
a large appropriation for aid to libraries.
Origin of appropriation
1325-75; Middle English (< Middle French) < Late Latin appropriātiōn- (stem of appropriātiō). See appropriate, -ion
Related forms
proappropriation, adjective
reappropriation, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for appropriation
  • They would agree that copying isn't pejorative, and that appropriation isn't necessarily a violation.
  • The legislature will decide soon whether to keep the appropriation.
  • The politics cut the money and the appropriation is small.
  • Stricter controls have been imposed on the appropriation of arable land for urban development.
  • The appropriation of scientific imagery for use in one's personal language is fascinating.
  • Costs were simply omitted-and eventually ballooned to well over twice the original appropriation.
  • However, that would not have addressed bond interest which is subject to a permanent appropriation.
  • She argued that there is no functional difference between a tax credit and a government appropriation.
  • Let us start with your appropriation of responsibility for the riots.
  • Also with a large manufacturing base, comes the need of services to supplement the distribution and appropriation of such goods.
British Dictionary definitions for appropriation


the act of setting apart or taking for one's own use
a sum of money set apart for a specific purpose, esp by a legislature
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for appropriation

late 14c., "taking (something) as private property," from Late Latin appropriationem (nominative appropriatio) "a making one's own," noun of action from past participle stem of appropriare (see appropriate). Meaning "setting aside for some purpose" (especially of money) first attested 1789 in U.S. Constitution.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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appropriation in Culture

appropriation definition

The grant of money by a legislature for some specific purpose. The authority to grant appropriations, popularly known as the power of the purse, gives legislatures a powerful check over executive branches and judicial branches, for no public money can be spent without legislative approval. Congress, for example, can approve or reject the annual budget requests of the executive branch for its agencies and programs, thereby influencing both domestic and foreign policy. (See also checks and balances and pork-barrel legislation.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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