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[ik-stawrt] /ɪkˈstɔrt/
verb (used with object)
  1. to wrest or wring (money, information, etc.) from a person by violence, intimidation, or abuse of authority; obtain by force, torture, threat, or the like.
  2. to take illegally by reason of one's office.
to compel (something) of a person or thing:
Her wit and intelligence extorted their admiration.
Origin of extort
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English (adj.) < Latin extortus, past participle of extorquēre, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + torquēre to twist
Related forms
extorter, noun
extortive, adjective
nonextortive, adjective
unextorted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for extorted
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • At the rehearsals not a word could be extorted from the Angel Raphael.

    My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt
  • I extorted and oppressed as long as I was able; while ye have power, get what you can.

  • A cargo of produce for the schooner perhaps could be extorted—and, who knows?

    Lord Jim Joseph Conrad
  • It was rather admiration she extorted by her competent serenity.

    'Twixt Land & Sea Joseph Conrad
  • Mrs. Travers extorted from d'Alcacer a fresh tribute of curiosity.

    The Rescue Joseph Conrad
  • He squeezed my arm till he extorted from me some sort of mumble.

    Falk Joseph Conrad
British Dictionary definitions for extorted


verb (transitive)
to secure (money, favours, etc) by intimidation, violence, or the misuse of influence or authority
to obtain by importunate demands: the children extorted a promise of a trip to the zoo
to overcharge for (something, esp interest on a loan)
Derived Forms
extorter, noun
extortive, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin extortus wrenched out, from extorquēre to wrest away, from torquēre to twist, wrench
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 extorted



1520s (as a past participle adj. from early 15c.), from Latin extortus, past participle of extorquere (see extortion). Related: Extorted; extorting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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