Pronunciation: (eks-prō'prē-āt"),[key] —v.t.,-at•ed, -at•ing. 1. to take possession of, esp. for public use by the right of eminent domain, thus divesting the title of the private owner: The government expropriated the land for a recreation area. 2. to dispossess (a person) of ownership: The revolutionary government expropriated the landowners from their estates. 3. to take (something) from another's possession for one's own use: He expropriated my ideas for his own article.