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[yoo-ser-pey-shuh n, -zer-] /ˌyu sərˈpeɪ ʃən, -zər-/
an act of usurping; wrongful or illegal encroachment, infringement, or seizure.
illegal seizure and occupation of a throne.
Origin of usurpation
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin ūsūrpātiōn- (stem of ūsūrpātiō), equivalent to ūsūrpāt(us) (past participle of ūsūrpāre to usurp) + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
[yoo-sur-puh-tiv, ‐zur‐] /yuˈsɜr pə tɪv, ‐ˈzɜr‐/ (Show IPA),
[yoo-sur-puh-tawr-ee, ‐tohr-ee, ‐zur‐] /yuˈsɜr pəˌtɔr i, ‐ˌtoʊr i, ‐ˈzɜr‐/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for usurpations
Historical Examples
  • Your consent alone can give the least validity to these usurpations.

    Robert Toombs Pleasant A. Stovall
  • Such are some of the usurpations and aggressions of the Slave Power.

  • The usurpations and acts of the rebels were considered not legal acts, but nullities.

    The Galaxy Various
  • Their only crime was opposition to the “usurpations of the Papal Schism.”

    Milton's England Lucia Ames Mead
  • All usurpations, not born of war, have been caused and supported by labor.

    What is Property? P. J. Proudhon
  • He finds the people oppressed by the usurpations of government, and he urges to rebellion.

    Junius Unmasked Joel Moody
  • By this he meant that the usurpations of the Treasury Department should be brought to a stop.

    Thomas Jefferson Gilbert Chinard
  • The tendency has been to usurpations by Congress rather than by the Executive.

  • The friend, the protector of the people against the usurpations of their enemies, was the character which he now chose to assume.

    A Manual of Ancient History

    A. H. L. (Arnold Hermann Ludwig) Heeren
  • True, they did not voice this revolt in their historic list of "injuries and usurpations on the part of man toward woman."

Word Origin and History for usurpations



late 14c., from Old French usurpacion, from Latin usurpationem (nominative usurpatio), noun of action from usurpare (see usurp).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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