Today’s word of the day from Dictionary.com is Purloin. It “entered English in the 1400s from late Middle English purloynen, from Anglo-French purloigner “to put off, remove.” “ In our present usage it means to take dishonestly; steal; filch; pilfer and to commit theft; steal. The Merriam-Webster dictionary adds another element to the basic definition: appropriate wrongfully and often by a breach of trust.
In my usual google search I found that it is a popular word, used in poetry, literature and journalism. My favorite newsie headline is this tidbit from KWCH News:
Topeka man accused of trying to peddle crate of purloined steaks at hookah bar.
…and this one from USA Today:
A simple game about flinging fowl at purloining pigs, Angry Birds carved itself an astounding niche in mobile gaming but it’s not the only game in town.
Speaking of birds, I found the quintessential example of purloiners of the avian variety. Nasty birds, called parasitic brooders who pilfer and overtake the nests of other species, often tossing the original eggs or even eating them, in order to deposit their own. If that is not horrible enough, these shady breeders then abandon their eggs and leave the raising of their chicks to the nest owners. If host bird’s chicks do happen to survive the initial scourge of egg destruction, they often find themselves fighting a losing battle against their larger, ravenous, foreign sibling at feeding time, eventually starving to death. Some brood parasites include the cuckoo and the brown-headed cowbird. Read more HERE.
Of course birds are not the only species that purloin, but I’ll leave those other examples to your imagination! Here are a few Haiku.
inspiring words as their own
fools with no conscience
Cuckoo bird mothers
leave mothering to others
purloining their nests