What does embezzle mean?

Definitions for embezzle
ɛmˈbɛz əlem·bez·zle

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word embezzle.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. embezzle, defalcate, peculate, misappropriate, malversateverb

    appropriate (as property entrusted to one's care) fraudulently to one's own use

    "The accountant embezzled thousands of dollars while working for the wealthy family"


  1. embezzleverb

    To steal or misappropriate money that one has been trusted with, especially to steal money from one's employer.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To EMBEZZLEverb

    Etymology: I his word seems corrupted by an ignorant pronunciation from imbecil.

    He had embezzled the king’s treasure, and extorted money by way of loan from all men. John Hayward.

    When thou hast embezzl’d all thy store,
    Where’s all thy father left? John Dryden, Pers. Sat. vi.


  1. embezzle

    Embezzlement is a crime that consists of withholding assets for the purpose of conversion of such assets, by one or more persons to whom the assets were entrusted, either to be held or to be used for specific purposes. Embezzlement is a type of financial fraud. For example, a lawyer might embezzle funds from the trust accounts of their clients; a financial advisor might embezzle the funds of investors; and a husband or a wife might embezzle funds from a bank account jointly held with the spouse.The term "embezzlement" is often used in informal speech to mean theft of money, usually from an organization or company such as an employer. Embezzlement is usually a premeditated crime, performed methodically, with precautions that conceal the criminal conversion of the property, which occurs without the knowledge or consent of the affected person. Often it involves the trusted individual embezzling only a small proportion of the total of the funds or resources they receive or control, in an attempt to minimize the risk of the detection of the misallocation of the funds or resources. When successful, embezzlement may continue for many years without detection.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Embezzleverb

    to appropriate fraudulently to one's own use, as property intrusted to one's care; to apply to one's private uses by a breach of trust; as, to embezzle money held in trust

  2. Embezzleverb

    to misappropriate; to waste; to dissipate in extravagance

  3. Etymology: [Norm. F. embeseiller to destroy; cf. OF. besillier to ill treat, ravage, destroy. Cf. Bezzle.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Embezzle

    em-bez′l, v.t. to appropriate fraudulently what has been entrusted.—ns. Embezz′lement, fraudulent appropriation of another's property by the person to whom it was entrusted; Embezz′ler. [Perh. from root of imbecile, the primary sense being to weaken: (obs.) Bezz′le, to squander, from O. Fr. besiler, to destroy, is the same word.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce embezzle?

How to say embezzle in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of embezzle in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of embezzle in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of embezzle in a Sentence


    The modern day dinosaurs are those that prey on helpless and defenseless civilians and embezzle from people’s taxes that take away the lifeblood of any nation.

  2. Frank Xie:

    The scope of the bank scandals where bank officials embezzle and steal funds from depositors is alarming, and what is exposed could only be the tip of the iceberg, as the Chinese economy slows down further, the fiscal shortage worsens, and the debt repayments become more widespread among Chinese companies, especially in the real estate sector, bank runs could become more often and on a larger scale.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for embezzle

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for embezzle »


Find a translation for the embezzle definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"embezzle." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 21 Mar. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/embezzle>.

Discuss these embezzle definitions with the community:


    Are we missing a good definition for embezzle? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    given to or marked by the consumption of alcohol
    • A. bibulous
    • B. naiant
    • C. dicotyledonous
    • D. irascible

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for embezzle: