- the act of stealing; the wrongful taking and carrying away of the personal goods or property of another; larceny.
- an instance of this.
- Archaic. something stolen.
Origin of theft
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- (of a device, campaign, system, etc) designed to prevent theft
- criminal law the dishonest taking of property belonging to another person with the intention of depriving the owner permanently of its possession
- rare something stolen
Word Origin for theft
Old English thēofth; related to Old Norse thӯfth, Old Frisian thiūvethe, Middle Dutch düfte; see thief
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
Old English þeofð (West Saxon þiefð), from Proto-Germanic *theubitho (cf. Old Frisian thiufthe, Old Norse þyfð), from *theubaz "thief" (see thief) + suffix -itha (cognate with Latin -itatem).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper