[ spoh-lee-ey-shuh n ]
/ ˌspoʊ liˈeɪ ʃən /


the act or an instance of plundering or despoiling.
authorized plundering of neutrals at sea in time of war.
Law. the destruction or material alteration of a bill of exchange, will, or the like.
the act of spoiling or damaging something.

Origin of spoliation

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin spoliātiōn- (stem of spoliātiō), equivalent to spoliāt(us) (past participle of spoliāre to spoil; see -ate1) + -iōn- -ion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for spoliation

British Dictionary definitions for spoliation

/ (ˌspəʊlɪˈeɪʃən) /


the act or an instance of despoiling or plundering
the authorized seizure or plundering of neutral vessels on the seas by a belligerent state in time of war
law the material alteration of a document so as to render it invalid
English ecclesiastical law the taking of the fruits of a benefice by a person not entitled to them

Derived forms of spoliation

spoliatory, adjective

Word Origin for spoliation

C14: from Latin spoliātiō, from spoliāre to spoil
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