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Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English corrupten, derived from Latin corruptus, past participle of corrumpō, corrumpere (to destroy, ruin, injure, spoil, corrupt, bribe), from com- (together) + rumpere (to break in pieces).


  • IPA(key): /kəˈɹʌpt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌpt


corrupt (comparative more corrupt, superlative most corrupt)

  1. In a depraved state; debased; perverted; morally degenerate; weak in morals.
    The government here is corrupt, so we'll emigrate to escape them.
  2. Abounding in errors; not genuine or correct; in an invalid state.
    The text of the manuscript is corrupt.
    It turned out that the program was corrupt - that's why it wouldn't open.
  3. In a putrid state; spoiled; tainted; vitiated; unsound.
    • 1603, Richard Knolles, The Generall Historie of the Turkes, [], London: [] Adam Islip, OCLC 837543169:
      with such corrupt and pestilent bread to feed them.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Nouns to which "corrupt" is often applied: practice, state, country, nation, regime, city, government, person, man, politician, leader, mayor, judge, member, minister, file, database, document, woman.




corrupt (third-person singular simple present corrupts, present participle corrupting, simple past and past participle corrupted)

  1. (transitive) To make corrupt; to change from good to bad; to draw away from the right path; to deprave; to pervert.
    Don't you dare corrupt my son with those disgusting pictures!
  2. (archaic, intransitive) To become putrid, tainted, or otherwise impure; to putrefy; to rot.
    • 1631, Francis [Bacon], “8. Century.”, in Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. [], 3rd edition, London: [] VVilliam Rawley; [p]rinted by J[ohn] H[aviland] for William Lee [], OCLC 1044372886:
      he entrails, which are the parts aptest to corrupt
    • 1732, George Smith, Institutiones Chirurgicæ: or, Principles of Surgery, [...] To which is Annexed, a Chirurgical Dispensatory, [...], London: Printed [by William Bowyer] for Henry Lintot, at the Cross-Keys against St. Dunstan's Church in Fleetstreet, OCLC 745299684, page 254:
      [] Lanfrank takes Notice of Tract. 3. Doct. 3. cap. 18. ſaying, "I have ſeen many who being full of Humours, have made an Iſſue under the Knee, before due Purgation had been premis'd; whence, by reaſon of the too great Defluxion of Humours, the Legs tumified, ſo that the cauterized Place corrupted, and a Cancer (or rather cacoethic Ulcer) was thereby made, with which great Difficulty was cur'd."
  3. (transitive) To introduce errors; to place into an invalid state.
    Unplugging a flash drive without dismounting it first can corrupt the data stored on the drive.
  4. To debase or make impure by alterations or additions; to falsify.
    to corrupt language, or a holy text
    to corrupt a book
  5. To waste, spoil, or consume; to make worthless.


Related terms[edit]




Borrowed from Latin corruptus or from Middle French corrupt.



corrupt (comparative corrupter, superlative corruptst)

  1. corrupt (lacking integrity, being prone to discriminating, open to bribes, etc.)
    Het bleek lastig om corrupte topambtenaren uit het bestuursapparaat te verwijderen.
    It turned out to be hard to remove corrupt high-ranking officials from the civil service.
  2. (textual criticism) corrupt (containing (many) errors)
    De tekst is op deze plaats zo corrupt dat iedere reconstructie op zand gegrondvest is.
    The text is so corrupt in this passage, that any reconstruction would be built on sand.
  3. deprave, morally corrupt
    De Grote Oorlog toonde hem dat de wereldorde corrupt was.
    The Great War showed him that the world order was corrupt.


Inflection of corrupt
uninflected corrupt
inflected corrupte
comparative corrupter
positive comparative superlative
predicative/adverbial corrupt corrupter het corruptst
het corruptste
indefinite m./f. sing. corrupte corruptere corruptste
n. sing. corrupt corrupter corruptste
plural corrupte corruptere corruptste
definite corrupte corruptere corruptste
partitive corrupts corrupters

Related terms[edit]


  • Afrikaans: korrup
  • Indonesian: korup
  • West Frisian: korrupt

Middle French[edit]


Borrowed from Latin corruptus.


corrupt m (feminine singular corrupte, masculine plural corrupts, feminine plural corruptes)

  1. corrupt (impure; not in its original form)