Definitions

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

  • noun Money or some other benefit given to a person in power, especially a public official, in an effort to cause the person to take a particular action.
  • noun Something offered to induce another to do something.
  • intransitive verb To give, offer, or promise a bribe to.
  • intransitive verb To give, offer, or promise bribes.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A gift begged; a present.
  • noun A gift or gratuity bestowed for the purpose of influencing the action or conduct of the receiver; especially, money or any valuable consideration given or promised for the betrayal of a trust or the corrupt performance of an allotted duty, as to a fiduciary agent, a judge, legislator, or other public officer, a witness, a voter, etc.
  • noun Anything that seduces: as, the bribes offered by glory or power.
  • To steal.
  • To give or promise a reward or consideration to for acting contrary to desire or duty; induce to a certain course of action by the gift or offer of something of value; gain over or corrupt by a bribe.
  • To steal.
  • To practise bribery; give a bribe to a person.

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

  • noun obsolete A gift begged; a present.
  • noun A price, reward, gift, or favor bestowed or promised with a view to prevent the judgment or corrupt the conduct of a judge, witness, voter, or other person in a position of trust.
  • noun That which seduces; seduction; allurement.
  • transitive verb obsolete To rob or steal.
  • transitive verb To give or promise a reward or consideration to (a judge, juror, legislator, voter, or other person in a position of trust) with a view to prevent the judgment or corrupt the conduct; to induce or influence by a bribe; to give a bribe to.
  • transitive verb To gain by a bribe; of induce as by a bribe.
  • intransitive verb obsolete To commit robbery or theft.
  • intransitive verb To give a bribe to a person; to pervert the judgment or corrupt the action of a person in a position of trust, by some gift or promise.

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

  • noun Something (usually money) given in exchange for influence or as an inducement to dishonesty.
  • verb transitive To give a bribe to.

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

  • verb make illegal payments to in exchange for favors or influence
  • noun payment made to a person in a position of trust to corrupt his judgment

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French, piece of bread given as alms.]

Examples

Comments

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  • "Covetousness in such Men prompts them to prostitute the Publick for Gain.

    The taking of a Bribe or Gratuity, should be punished with as severe Penalties, as the defrauding of the State.

    Let Men have sufficient Salaries, and exceed them at their Peril."

    - William Penn, 'Fruits of Solitude'.

    Interestingly, this comes under the sub-heading Clean Hands.

    September 8, 2009