[ mal-treet ]
/ mælˈtrit /

verb (used with object)

to treat or handle badly, cruelly, or roughly; abuse: to maltreat a prisoner.

Origin of maltreat

1700–10; earlier maltrait < French maltraiter. See mal-, treat
Related formsmal·treat·er, nounmal·treat·ment, noun
Can be confusedmaltreatment mistreatment Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for maltreat

British Dictionary definitions for maltreat


/ (mælˈtriːt) /


(tr) to treat badly, cruelly, or inconsiderately
Derived Formsmaltreater, nounmaltreatment, noun

Word Origin for maltreat

C18: from French maltraiter
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 maltreat



1708, from French maltraiter, or formed in English from mal- + treat (v.). Related: Maltreated; maltreating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper