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[ree-puh-zes] /ˌri pəˈzɛs/
verb (used with object)
to possess again; regain possession of, especially for nonpayment of money due.
to put again in possession of something:
to repossess the Bourbons of their throne.
Origin of repossess
First recorded in 1485-95; re- + possess
Related forms
repossessable, adjective
[ree-puh-zesh-uh n] /ˌri pəˈzɛʃ ən/ (Show IPA),
repossessor, noun
unrepossessed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for repossess
Historical Examples
  • The government resolved to repossess New Orleans and Mobile.

  • Cordelia lands with French troops to repossess Lear of his kingdom.

    William Shakespeare John Masefield
  • Here there was clearly no aggression: he was only attempting to repossess his own.

    The Admiral Douglas Sladen
  • As he spoke she had but one thought, to repossess herself of the note.

    Eden Edgar Saltus
  • I freely own that I'd give all the rest willingly to repossess myself of the Monsoon treaty.

  • Thus ended the most notable effort of the Nephites to repossess the land of their fathers' first inheritance, the land of Nephi.

  • "He has the same right to repossess his slave here as in his own State;" the same right to kill him if he attempts to escape!

  • "Call me your brother," said I, trying to repossess myself of the hand she had gently withdrawn from my grasp.

    Confessions Of Con Cregan Charles James Lever
  • To allow the memory of that other evening to repossess her had seemed the best answer to make.

    The Debit Account

    Oliver Onions
  • The war was occasioned by Black Hawk disowning the treaty and attempting to repossess the territory.

    Diary in America, Series Two Frederick Marryat (AKA Captain Marryat)
British Dictionary definitions for repossess


verb (transitive)
to take back possession of (property), esp for nonpayment of money due under a hire-purchase agreement
to restore ownership of (something) to someone
Derived Forms
repossession (ˌriːpəˈzɛʃən) noun
repossessor, noun
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 repossess

late 15c., "to reoccupy;" see re- "back, again" + possess. Meaning "take back from a purchaser who defaults on payments" first recorded 1933. Related: Repossessed; repossessing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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