verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to become corrupt.

Origin of corrupt

1250–1300; Middle English (< Anglo-French) < Latin corruptus broken in pieces, corrupted (past participle of corrumpere), equivalent to cor- cor- + rup- (variant stem of rumpere to break) + -tus past participle suffix
Related formscor·rupt·ed·ly, adverbcor·rupt·ed·ness, nouncor·rupt·er, cor·rup·tor, nouncor·rup·tive, adjectivecor·rup·tive·ly, adverbcor·rupt·ly, adverbcor·rupt·ness, nounnon·cor·rupt, adjectivenon·cor·rupt·ly, adverbnon·cor·rupt·ness, nounnon·cor·rupt·er, nounnon·cor·rup·tive, adjectiveo·ver·cor·rupt, verb, adjectiveo·ver·cor·rupt·ly, adverbpre·cor·rupt, verb (used with object)pre·cor·rupt·ly, adverbpre·cor·rupt·ness, nounpre·cor·rup·tive, adjectiveun·cor·rupt, adjectiveun·cor·rupt·ly, adverbun·cor·rupt·ness, nounun·cor·rupt·ed, adjectiveun·cor·rupt·ed·ly, adverbun·cor·rupt·ed·ness, nounun·cor·rupt·ing, adjectiveun·cor·rup·tive, adjective

Synonyms for corrupt

1. false, untrustworthy. 3, 4. contaminated. 4, 5. putrescent, rotten, spoiled. 6. demoralize, bribe. 7. debase, vitiate. 10. contaminate, pollute, spoil, defile. 11. putrefy.

Synonym study

1. Corrupt, dishonest, venal apply to one, especially in public office, who acts on mercenary motives, without regard to honor, right, or justice. A corrupt politician is one originally honest who has succumbed to temptation and begun questionable practices. A dishonest politician is one lacking native integrity. A venal politician is one so totally debased as to sell patronage. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for corruptly

cruelly, viciously, evilly, immorally, atrociously, diabolically

Examples from the Web for corruptly

Historical Examples of corruptly

  • They are as corruptly managed as those of the city government.

  • On emerging from them it is said to have been "cylindered," or, corruptly, "calendered."


    Leo H. (Leo Hartley) Grindon

  • The words euere-il del are corruptly repeated from line 1330 above.

  • The glaive of Justice should descend where erstwhile it had corruptly been stayed.

    The Boss of Little Arcady

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Ensign (corruptly written "ancient" during the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries).

    British Flags

    W. G. Perrin

British Dictionary definitions for corruptly



lacking in integrity; open to or involving bribery or other dishonest practicesa corrupt official; corrupt practices in an election
morally depraved
putrid or rotten
contaminated; unclean
(of a text or manuscript) made meaningless or different in meaning from the original by scribal errors or alterations
(of computer programs or data) containing errors


to become or cause to become dishonest or disloyal
to debase or become debased morally; deprave
(tr) to infect or contaminate; taint
(tr) to cause to become rotten
(tr) to alter (a text, manuscript, etc) from the original
(tr) computing to introduce errors into (data or a program)
Derived Formscorrupter or corruptor, nouncorruptive, adjectivecorruptively, adverbcorruptly, adverbcorruptness, noun

Word Origin for corrupt

C14: from Latin corruptus spoiled, from corrumpere to ruin, literally: break to pieces, from rumpere to break
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

Word Origin and History for corruptly



mid-14c., from Old French corropt "unhealthy, corrupt; uncouth" (of language), and directly from Latin corruptus, past participle of corrumpere "to destroy; spoil," figuratively "corrupt, seduce, bribe," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + rup-, past participle stem of rumpere "to break" (see rupture (n.)). Related: Corruptly; corruptness.



mid-14c., "contaminate, impair the purity of," from Latin corruptus, past participle of corrumpere (see corrupt (adj.)). Late 14c. as "pervert the meaning of," also "putrefy." Related: Corrupted; corrupting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper