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misuse

[noun mis-yoos; verb mis-yooz] /noun mɪsˈyus; verb mɪsˈyuz/
noun
1.
wrong or improper use; misapplication.
2.
Obsolete. bad or abusive treatment.
verb (used with object), misused, misusing.
3.
to use wrongly or improperly; misapply.
4.
to treat badly or abusively; maltreat.
Origin of misuse
1350-1400
Middle English word dating back to 1350-1400; See origin at mis-1, use
Synonyms
1. misemployment, misappropriation.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for misuse
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Of little worth as life is when we misuse it, it is worth that effort.

    A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens
  • We found they knew, alas, too much about the misuse of everything growing in the field!

    Lotus Buds

    Amy Carmichael
  • They were provided thee; all that thou hast created is misuse!

    The Golden Fountain Lilian Staveley
  • In fine, we owe the success of this trick to the misuse of fine emotions.

  • And the only way of learning how to use properly a thing is through its misuse.

    My Reminiscences Rabindranath Tagore
British Dictionary definitions for misuse

misuse

noun (ˌmɪsˈjuːs)
1.
erroneous, improper, or unorthodox use: misuse of words
2.
cruel or inhumane treatment
verb (transitive) (ˌmɪsˈjuːz)
3.
to use wrongly
4.
to treat badly or harshly
5.
to use (something, esp alcohol, drugs, etc) improperly
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 misuse
v.

late 14c., "to use improperly;" see mis- (1) + use (v.). Meaning "to subject to ill-treatment" is attested from 1530s. Related: Misused; misusing.

n.

late 14c., from mis- (1) + use (n.). It aligns with the older sense of the verb misuse.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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8
10
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