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usurp

[yoo-surp, -zurp] /yuˈsɜrp, -ˈzɜrp/
verb (used with object)
1.
to seize and hold (a position, office, power, etc.) by force or without legal right:
The pretender tried to usurp the throne.
2.
to use without authority or right; employ wrongfully:
The magazine usurped copyrighted material.
verb (used without object)
3.
to commit forcible or illegal seizure of an office, power, etc.; encroach.
Origin
1275-1325
1275-1325; Middle English < Latin ūsūrpāre to take possession through use, equivalent to ūsū (ablative of ūsus use (noun)) + -rp-, reduced form of -rip-, combining form of rapere to seize + -āre infinitive ending
Related forms
usurper, noun
usurpingly, adverb
nonusurping, adjective
nonusurpingly, adverb
self-usurp, verb (used without object)
unusurped, adjective
unusurping, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for usurping
  • He was widely seen by those around the king to be too powerful, even usurping the prerogatives of the monarch.
  • In a delicate exercise, charities are trying to present their agenda without usurping the mayor.
  • Strict controls are enforced on securities trading and real estate to prevent rich people from usurping too much wealth.
  • Observations to date suggest bears may actually be benefitting from the presence of wolves by usurping wolf-kills.
  • Whatever the arrangement, becoming a true instructional leader does not mean usurping the job of the teacher.
  • Lastly, starlings perhaps have contributed to the decline of native cavity-nesting birds by usurping their nesting sites.
  • It renders unreviewable bankruptcy court orders usurping agency authority when appellate courts consider that equitable.
British Dictionary definitions for usurping

usurp

/juːˈzɜːp/
verb
1.
to seize, take over, or appropriate (land, a throne, etc) without authority
Derived Forms
usurpation, noun
usurpative, usurpatory, adjective
usurper, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French usurper, from Latin ūsūrpāre to take into use, probably from ūsus use + rapere to seize
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 usurping

usurp

v.

early 14c., from Old French usurper, from Latin usurpare "make use of, seize for use," in Late Latin "to assume unlawfully," from usus "a use" (see use) + rapere "to seize" (see rapid). Related: Usurped; usurping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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