confiscate [ verb kon-f uh-skeyt; adjective k uh n- fis-kit] Word Origin See more synonyms for confiscate on Thesaurus.com verb (used with object), con·fis·cat·ed, con·fis·cat·ing. to seize as forfeited to the public domain; appropriate, by way of penalty, for public use. to seize by or as if by authority; appropriate summarily: The border guards confiscated our movie cameras. seized or appropriated, as for public use. Origin of confiscate 1525–35;
(past participle of
to seize for the public treasury), equivalent to
) basket, moneybag, public treasury (see
-ātus -ate 1 Related forms con·fis·cat·a·ble, adjective con·fis·ca·tion, noun con·fis·ca·tor, noun non·con·fis·ca·tion, noun pro·con·fis·ca·tion, adjective re·con·fis·cate, verb (used with object), re·con·fis·cat·ed, re·con·fis·cat·ing. un·con·fis·cat·ed, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for confiscator to seize (property), esp for public use and esp by way of a penalty seized or confiscated; forfeit having lost or been deprived of property through confiscation Derived Forms confiscation, noun confiscator, noun Word Origin
C16: from Latin
confiscāre to seize for the public treasury, from fiscus basket, treasury
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for confiscator confiscate v.
1550s, originally, "to appropriate for the treasury," from Latin
confiscatus, past participle of confiscare, from com- "together" (see com-) + fiscus "public treasury," literally "money basket" (see fiscal). Related: Confiscated; confiscating.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper