Word of the Day: Conspiracy/Conspire


noun \kən-ˈspir-ə-sē\

: a secret plan made by two or more people to do something that is harmful or illegal

: the act of secretly planning to do something that is harmful or illegal

plural con·spir·a·cies

Full Definition of CONSPIRACY

1:  the act of conspiring together

2a :  an agreement among conspirators

 b :  a group of conspirators

Examples of CONSPIRACY

  1. The CIA uncovered a conspiracy against the government.
  2. They were accused of conspiracy to commit murder.


Middle English conspiracie, from Latin conspirare

First Known Use: 14th century



noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Agreement between two or more persons to commit an unlawful act or to accomplish a lawful end by unlawful means. Some U.S. states require an overt act in addition to the agreement to constitute conspiracy. Individual conspirators need not even know of the existence or the identity of all other conspirators. In a chain conspiracy the parties act separately and successively (as in distributing narcotics). A civil conspiracy is not prosecuted as a crime but forms the grounds for a lawsuit. In antitrust law, conspiracies in restraint of trade (e.g., price fixing) are rigorously prosecuted. In the U.S. it is common to punish a conspiracy to commit an offense more harshly than the offense itself, but there has been a growing trend to follow the European example and make the punishment for conspiracy the same as or less than that for the offense itself.



verb \kən-ˈspī(-ə)r\

: to secretly plan with someone to do something that is harmful or illegal

: to happen in a way that produces bad or unpleasant results

con·spired  con·spir·ing

Full Definition of CONSPIRE

transitive verb
:  plot, contrive
intransitive verb

1a :  to join in a secret agreement to do an unlawful or wrongful act or an act which becomes unlawful as a result of the secret agreement <accused of conspiring to overthrow the government>

 b :  scheme
2:  to act in harmony toward a common end <circumstances conspired to defeat his efforts>

Examples of CONSPIRE

  1. <conspired to replace the leader with someone more easily influenced>
  2. <foul weather and airline foul-ups seemed to be conspiring to ruin our vacation>

Origin of CONSPIRE

Middle English, from Anglo-French conspirer, from Latin conspirare to be in harmony, conspire, from com- + spirare to breathe

First Known Use: 14th century



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