Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To put into a wrong place: misplace punctuation in a sentence.
  • transitive v. To mislay: I misplaced my wallet.
  • transitive v. To bestow (confidence, for example) on an improper, unsuitable, or unworthy person or idea.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To put something somewhere and then forget its location; to mislay
  • v. To apply one's talents inappropriately.
  • v. To put something in the wrong location.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To put in a wrong place; to set or place on an improper or unworthy object.
  • transitive v. To place in a location that one does not recall; to mislay; to lose.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To place wrongly; put in the wrong place; locate improperly or unsuitably: as, to misplace a book: misplaced confidence.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. place (something) where one cannot find it again
  • v. place or position wrongly; put in the wrong position

Etymologies

mis- +‎ place (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • "They are very insolent and abusive: When my foot slips, when I fall into any trouble, or when I make any mistake, misplace a word, or take a false step, they magnify themselves against me; they are pleased with it, and promise themselves that it will ruin my interest, and that if I slip I shall certainly fall and be undone."

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume III (Job to Song of Solomon)

  • If I do but take one false step, misplace a word, or cast a look awry, I shall be sure to hear of it.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume III (Job to Song of Solomon)

  • If all else fails, one can only hope her executors will "misplace" or "drop" her ashes, only to discover them as they're lifted to the wind, landing in front of the establishment that was, and will always remain, hers.

    Elaine's Ashes

  • It was quite convenient to "misplace" mortgage payments, so even homeowners who were never delinquent could get hit with fees and higher rates.

    William K. Black: Foreclose on the Foreclosure Fraudsters, Part 2: Spurious Arguments Against Holding the Fraudsters Accountable

  • Several of my coworkers would "misplace" cake by not looking for it, and no one was ever trained to write on a cake or spell congratulations other than the bakers.

    And They Say Customer Service is Dead

  • * Aren't HCPB easier to "misplace" or "damage" than the paper trail printed by touch-screen voting machines?

    Hand-Counted Paper Ballots: Frequently Asked Questions

  • Never mind the arguments in favour of such an approach after all, it could well help to increase transparancy and leave less budget flexibility for the notoriously weak EU accountants to "misplace" dosh with, plus would make it clear to each EU citizen precisely how little the EU actually costs them while getting rid of the constant disputes over who should pay what, rebates and the like...

    EU Tax?

  • The fact that an airline can 'misplace' somebody's luggage and possibly put it onto the wrong plane does not fill me with confidence that another tragedy like Locherbie can be averted in the future.

    Fear of flying

  • This would certainly be the perfect time for the military to "misplace" a tactical nuke ...

    Las Vegas Sun Stories: All Sun Headlines

  • The hidden balloon payments may well have been found unconscionable by a judge which is one good reason for them to "misplace" the note upon which finding the judge has multiple options in equity.

    Crooks and Liars

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