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bribe Line breaks: bribe
Pronunciation: /brʌɪb/

Definition of bribe in English:


[with object]
Dishonestly persuade (someone) to act in one’s favour by a gift of money or other inducement: they attempted to bribe opponents into losing [with object and infinitive]: they had bribed an official to sell them a certificate
More example sentences
  • No matter how much money she bribed the men with, they didn't let her enter the library, or even order a book.
  • Did they tip the balance in their favour by bribing officials?
  • We can then use that money to pay for lawsuits, malpractice, and bribing politicians… I mean lobbying politicians.
buy off, pay off, suborn, give an inducement to, corrupt
informal grease someone's palm, give someone a backhander, give someone a sweetener, keep someone sweet, get at, fix, square
British informal nobble


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A sum of money or other inducement offered or given to bribe someone: lawmakers were caught accepting bribes to bring in legalized gambling
More example sentences
  • They've gone as far as illegal activities - offering bribes on the floor of the House, holding votes open for three hours.
  • They will probably have to pay larger bribes and offer better terms to overcome their questionable past.
  • But as long as others are free to offer bribes, some will try to buy special licenses to bypass the monopoly.
inducement, ‘incentive’;
North American payola
British informal bung, dropsy
North American informal plugola, schmear
Australian informal sling
rare douceur, drop


Late Middle English: from Old French briber, brimber 'beg', of unknown origin. The original sense was 'rob, extort', hence (as a noun) 'theft, stolen goods', also 'money extorted or demanded for favours', later 'offer money as an inducement' (early 16th century).



Pronunciation: /ˈbrʌɪbəb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • Nobody could be that big a set of corrupt, easily bribable morons.
  • If the attacker is in some country with bribable police, there's nothing you can do anyway.
  • She didn't know much about doctors, but judges were bribable, police was bribable, the whole world was bribable.


Pronunciation: /ˈbrʌɪbə/
Example sentences
  • I have been offered bribes in the past, which had hilarious consequences for the briber.
  • The briber would rather pay the money than have the information revealed.
  • Regardless of the briber's intentions, paying for turnout is illegal in federal elections.

Words that rhyme with bribe

ascribe, gybe, imbibe, jibe, proscribe, scribe, subscribe, transcribe, tribe, vibe

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