peculate

[ pek-yuh-leyt ]
/ ˈpɛk yəˌleɪt /

verb (used with or without object), pec·u·lat·ed, pec·u·lat·ing.

to steal or take dishonestly (money, especially public funds, or property entrusted to one's care); embezzle.

Origin of peculate

1740–50; v. use of peculate embezzlement (now obsolete) < Latin pecūlātus, equivalent to pecūlā(rī) to embezzle, literally, to make public property private + -tus suffix of v. action. See peculiar, -ate1
Related formspec·u·la·tion, nounpec·u·la·tor, nounun·pec·u·lat·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for peculation

British Dictionary definitions for peculation

peculate

/ (ˈpɛkjʊˌleɪt) /

verb

to appropriate or embezzle (public money)
Derived Formspeculation, nounpeculator, noun

Word Origin for peculate

C18: from Latin pecūlārī, from pecūlium private property (originally, cattle); see peculiar
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