Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A series of scandals occurring during the Nixon administration in which members of the executive branch organized illegal political espionage against their perceived opponents and were charged with violation of the public trust, bribery, contempt of Congress, and attempted obstruction of justice.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A gateway through which water passes, or a gate by which it may be ex cluded or confined; a flood-gate.
  • noun A gate by which access is gained to a river, fountain, well, or other body or supply of water.
  • noun A water-plug or valve.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • A gate, or valve, by which a flow of water is permitted, prevented, or regulated.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • proper noun An American political scandal (beginning with a burglary in the Watergate Hotel in Washington, DC in 1972) that eventually led to the resignation of US President Richard Nixon.

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

  • noun regulator consisting of a valve or gate that controls the rate of water flow through a sluice
  • noun a political scandal involving abuse of power and bribery and obstruction of justice; led to the resignation of Richard Nixon in 1974

Etymologies

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

[After Watergate, a building complex in Washington, DC, the site of a burglary (1972) that gave rise to the scandals.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From the name of the Watergate Hotel; the complex itself was named after the "Water Gate" area where symphony orchestra concerts were staged on the Potomac River between 1935 and 1965.

Examples

Comments

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  • "I can't stand it. I know you planned it.

    I'mma set it straight, this Watergate.

    I can't stand rocking when I'm in here--

    'Cause your crystal ball ain't so crystal clear."

    --Beastie Boys, "Sabotage"

    March 19, 2011