See more synonyms for dispossess on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to put (a person) out of possession, especially of real property; oust.
  2. to banish.
  3. to abandon ownership of (a building), especially as a bad investment: Landlords have dispossessed many old tenement buildings.

Origin of dispossess

1425–75; dis-1 + possess; replacing Middle English disposseden, equivalent to dis-1 + posseden (< Old French posseder) < Latin possidēre; see possess
Related formsdis·pos·ses·sion, noundis·pos·ses·sor, noundis·pos·ses·so·ry [dis-puh-zes-uh-ree] /ˌdɪs pəˈzɛs ə ri/, adjective

Synonyms for dispossess

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1. See strip1.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for dispossession

loss, denial, withdrawal, privation, deprival

Examples from the Web for dispossession

Contemporary Examples of dispossession

Historical Examples of dispossession

  • For one thing, it would involve the dispossession of that year's baby.

    Mary Gray

    Katharine Tynan

  • How dim was her own love-dream beside this torment of dispossession.

    Amabel Channice

    Anne Douglas Sedgwick

  • He stared at her; but the ray only illumined the bewilderment of his dispossession.

    Amabel Channice

    Anne Douglas Sedgwick

  • And he never felt so to the full his dispossession as in thinking of Robert.

  • The Spaniards had won a footing already too secure for dispossession.

    The Lily and the Totem

    William Gilmore Simms

British Dictionary definitions for dispossession


  1. (tr) to take away possession of something, esp property; expel
Derived Formsdispossession, noundispossessor, noundispossessory, adjective
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 dispossession

1570s, noun of action from dispossess.



late 15c., from Old French despossesser "to dispossess," from des- (see dis-) + possesser (see possess). Related: Dispossessed; dispossessing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper