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bribe

[brahyb]
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noun
  1. money or any other valuable consideration given or promised with a view to corrupting the behavior of a person, especially in that person's performance as an athlete, public official, etc.: The motorist offered the arresting officer a bribe to let him go.
  2. anything given or serving to persuade or induce: The children were given candy as a bribe to be good.
verb (used with object), bribed, brib·ing.
  1. to give or promise a bribe to: They bribed the reporter to forget about what he had seen.
  2. to influence or corrupt by a bribe: The judge was too honest to be bribed.
verb (used without object), bribed, brib·ing.
  1. to give a bribe; practice bribery.

Origin of bribe

1350–1400; Middle English < Middle French: remnant of food given as alms, said to be < an expressive base *bri(m)b- denoting something small
Related formsbrib·a·ble, bribe·a·ble, adjectivebrib·a·bil·i·ty, bribe·a·bil·i·ty, nounbrib·ee, nounbrib·er, nounout·bribe, verb (used with object), out·bribed, out·brib·ing.un·brib·a·ble, adjectiveun·brib·a·bly, adverbun·bribed, adjectiveun·brib·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for briber

Historical Examples

  • And then the latter man has the briber so much at advantage.

    Lady Anna

    Anthony Trollope

  • Perhaps you would be willing to give me the name of this briber, Mr. Hatch?

    The Wreckers

    Francis Lynde

  • Briber and grafter are now 'good men,' and would have passed for virtuous in the American community of seventy years ago.

  • André was a spy and briber, who sought to ruin the American cause by means of the treachery of an American general.

    George Washington, Vol. I

    Henry Cabot Lodge


British Dictionary definitions for briber

bribe

verb
  1. to promise, offer, or give something, usually money, to (a person) to procure services or gain influence, esp illegally
noun
  1. a reward, such as money or favour, given or offered for this purpose
  2. any persuasion or lure
  3. a length of flawed or damaged cloth removed from the main piece
Derived Formsbribable or bribeable, adjectivebriber, noun

Word Origin

C14: from Old French briber to beg, of obscure origin
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

Word Origin and History for briber

bribe

n.

late 14c., "thing stolen," from Old French bribe "bit, piece, hunk; morsel of bread given to beggars" (14c., cf. Old French bribeor "vagrant, beggar"), from briber, brimber "to beg," a general Romanic word (Gamillscheg marks it as Rotwelsch, i.e. "thieves' jargon"), of uncertain origin; old sources suggest Celtic (cf. Breton breva "to break"). Shift of meaning to "gift given to influence corruptly" is by mid-15c.

bribe

v.

late 14c., "pilfer, steal," also "practice extortion," from Old French briber "go begging," from bribe (see bribe (n.)). Related: Bribed; bribing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper