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plunder

[pluhn-der] /ˈplʌn dər/
verb (used with object)
1.
to rob of goods or valuables by open force, as in war, hostile raids, brigandage, etc.:
to plunder a town.
2.
to rob, despoil, or fleece:
to plunder the public treasury.
3.
to take wrongfully, as by pillage, robbery, or fraud:
to plunder a piece of property.
verb (used without object)
4.
to take plunder; pillage.
noun
5.
plundering, pillage, or spoliation.
6.
that which is taken in plundering; loot.
7.
anything taken by robbery, theft, or fraud.
Origin
1620-1630
1620-30; < Dutch plunderen
Related forms
plunderable, adjective
plunderer, noun
plunderingly, adverb
plunderous, adjective
unplundered, adjective
unplunderous, adjective
unplunderously, adverb
Synonyms
1. rape, ravage, sack, devastate. 5. rapine, robbery. 6. booty, spoils.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for plundering
  • Simply plundering them more thoroughly so that salmon production is doubled seems a dangerous experiment.
  • Biopiracy is what watchdog groups and government officials call the plundering of biological organisms for profit.
  • Industrialized countries in the past have done their share of plundering and polluting.
  • But after the farmer caught six thieves plundering his walnut orchard in less than a day, he knew he had a problem.
  • They share the same knack for finding ingenious ways to answer unlikely questions, often by plundering forgotten troves of data.
  • Pop music has always been a benign invader, plundering and homogenizing wherever it treads.
  • But every so often, plundering and pillaging a canonical text for the sake of entertainment gives it the kiss of life.
  • Antioxidants shield cells from the plundering effects of free radicals.
  • The town's history of plundering the environment is not universal though.
  • There he became a key witness with respect to art plundering.
British Dictionary definitions for plundering

plunder

/ˈplʌndə/
verb
1.
to steal (valuables, goods, sacred items, etc) from (a town, church, etc) by force, esp in time of war; loot
2.
(transitive) to rob or steal (choice or desirable things) from (a place): to plunder an orchard
noun
3.
anything taken by plundering or theft; booty
4.
the act of plundering; pillage
Derived Forms
plunderable, adjective
plunderer, noun
plunderous, adjective
Word Origin
C17: probably from Dutch plunderen (originally: to plunder household goods); compare Middle High German plunder bedding, household goods
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for plundering

plunder

v.

1630s, from German plündern, from Middle High German plunderen "to plunder," originally "to take away household furniture," from plunder (n.) "household goods, clothes," also "lumber, baggage" (14c.; cf. Modern German Plunder "lumber, trash"), which is related to Middle Dutch plunder "household goods;" Frisian and Dutch plunje "clothes." A word acquired by English via the Thirty Years War and applied in native use after the outbreak of the English Civil War in 1642. Related: Plundered; plundering. Plunderbund was a U.S. colloquial word from 1914 referring to "a corrupt alliance of corporate and financial interests," with German Bund "alliance, league."

n.

"goods taken by force; act of plundering," 1640s, from plunder (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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