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[rob] /rɒb/
verb (used with object), robbed, robbing.
to take something from (someone) by unlawful force or threat of violence; steal from.
to deprive (someone) of some right or something legally due:
They robbed her of her inheritance.
to plunder or rifle (a house, shop, etc.).
to deprive of something unjustly or injuriously:
The team was robbed of a home run hitter when the umpire called it a foul ball. The shock robbed him of his speech.
Mining. to remove ore or coal from (a pillar).
verb (used without object), robbed, robbing.
to commit or practice robbery.
rob Peter to pay Paul, to take something from one person or thing to pay one's debt or hypothetical debt to another, as to sacrifice one's health by overworking.
Origin of rob
1175-1225; Middle English robben < Old French robber < Germanic; compare Old High German roubōn. See reave1
Related forms
unrobbed, adjective
Can be confused
burglarize, mug, rip off, rob, steal (see synonym study at the current entry)
1. Rob, rifle, sack refer to seizing possessions that belong to others. Rob is the general word for taking possessions by unlawful force or violence: to rob a bank, a house, a train. A term with a more restricted meaning is rifle, to make a thorough search for what is valuable or worthwhile, usually within a small space: to rifle a safe. On the other hand, sack is a term for robbery on a huge scale during war; it suggests destruction accompanying pillage, and often includes the indiscriminate massacre of civilians: to sack a town or district. 2. defraud, cheat. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for robbed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He knows who robbed him of his liberty, and from me shall he learn who has restored it to him.

  • How, Mr. Tilden, how far is it to the cross-roads where the mail-carrier says he was robbed?

    The Underdog F. Hopkinson Smith
  • Fresh from the country he succumbed to temptation and robbed the mails.

    The Lincoln Story Book Henry L. Williams
  • There had been a conspiracy against him; he was outwitted, robbed, befooled.

    Fair Margaret H. Rider Haggard
  • When they robbed a train they let the newsboy alone for fear he would get the drop on them.

British Dictionary definitions for robbed


verb robs, robbing, robbed
(transitive) to take something from (someone) illegally, as by force or threat of violence
to plunder (a house, shop, etc)
(transitive) to deprive unjustly: to be robbed of an opportunity
Derived Forms
robber, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French rober, of Germanic origin; compare Old High German roubōn to rob
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 robbed



late 12c., from Old French rober "rob, steal, pillage, ransack, rape," from West Germanic *rauba "booty" (cf. Old High German roubon "to rob," roub "spoil, plunder;" Old English reafian, source of the reave in bereave), from Proto-Germanic *raubon "to rob," from PIE *reup-, *reub- "to snatch" (see rip (v.)).

Lord, hou schulde God approve þat þou robbe Petur, and gif þis robbere to Poule in þe name of Crist? [Wyclif, c.1380]
To rob the cradle is attested from 1864 in reference to drafting young men in the American Civil War; by 1949 in reference to seductions or romantic relationships with younger persons. Related: Robbed; robbing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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