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[kuh n-spahyuh r] /kənˈspaɪər/
verb (used without object), conspired, conspiring.
to agree together, especially secretly, to do something wrong, evil, or illegal:
They conspired to kill the king.
to act or work together toward the same result or goal.
verb (used with object), conspired, conspiring.
to plot (something wrong, evil, or illegal).
Origin of conspire
1325-75; Middle English < Latin conspīrāre to act in harmony, conspire, equivalent to con- con- + spīrāre to breathe; see spirant, spirit
Related forms
conspirer, noun
conspiringly, adverb
nonconspiring, adjective
preconspire, verb, preconspired, preconspiring.
unconspired, adjective
unconspiring, adjective
unconspiringly, adverb
Can be confused
connive, conspire.
1. complot, intrigue. See plot. 2. combine, concur, cooperate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for conspire
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Do not conspire, is one of the lessons which Paris teaches by her history.

    Is Polite Society Polite? Julia Ward Howe
  • He dwelt on Cobham's wealth, and argued that so rich a man would not venture to conspire.

    Raleigh Edmund Gosse
  • Invasion, pestilence, civil war, may conspire to exterminate the eight millions of free spirits who now dwell there.

  • You try to bunco me and now you conspire with an imbecile to humble me into the dust.

    Old Ebenezer Opie Read
  • Why does all the world watch over barbers and conspire to promote their interests?

    The Big Bow Mystery I. Zangwill
British Dictionary definitions for conspire


verb when intr, sometimes foll by against
to plan or agree on (a crime or harmful act) together in secret
(intransitive) to act together towards some end as if by design: the elements conspired to spoil our picnic
Derived Forms
conspirer, noun
conspiringly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Old French conspirer, from Latin conspīrāre to plot together, literally: to breathe together, from spīrāre to breathe
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 conspire

late 14c., from Old French conspirer (14c.), from Latin conspirare "to agree, unite, plot," literally "to breathe together," from com- "together" (see com-) + spirare "to breathe" (see spirit (n.)). Or perhaps the notion is "to blow together" musical instruments, i.e., "To sound in unison." Related: Conspired; conspiring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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