Definition of thieving in English:



  • attributive Keen to steal; thievish.

    ‘securing the zip on my backpack against thieving fingers’
    ‘get lost, you thieving swine’
    • ‘My Mother always talked about them and their nests as if a caravan of thieving gypsies had set up camp in the back yard.’
    • ‘Thieving pensioners are a new social phenomenon, apparently.’
    • ‘I'll be sleeping with one eye open around every one of you sneaky puling horse thieving bastards.’
    • ‘A 27-year-old heroin addict found himself in the grip of a police dog after going on a late-night thieving expedition.’
    • ‘I didn't want any thieving, shifty-eyed shepherds near our inn.’
    • ‘An 1823 letter by John C. Calhoun was offered on eBay and led to the discovery of a thieving archivist.’
    • ‘But I do fear in approving its publication you've probably made yourself Captain Nasty for generations of thieving welfarists.’
    • ‘There's no economic theory to explain it, other than the theory that the inhabitants are grasping thieving swine.’
    • ‘Forget all that, forget any sort of reasonable discussion, let's just call them thieving scroungers again.’
    • ‘I would like to shame the spineless, thieving moron who on April 5 stole my little girl's books from the toilets in Morrisons.’
    • ‘Insults go with the territory, I have no problem with people calling me a thieving, parasite dog.’
    • ‘Everything we need to know about Leftists - that they are hate-filled, thieving, dangerous thugs.’
    • ‘Some, especially in the provinces, unmasked bullying and thieving local officials who had been exploiting the people.’
    • ‘But private property was not safe from his thieving hands.’
    • ‘All in all, a different picture from Corwin's portrayal of the credible, kindly dad and the thieving, abusive mom.’
    • ‘He's no mate of mine the thieving git!’
    • ‘Angela's public world and Ronnie's very private life collide with an assortment of thieving politicos, power-hungry businessmen, and ruthless clergy.’
    • ‘Police are also hunting a boy aged about 12 who ran off after the thieving monkey.’
    • ‘Those devious, thieving bastards were expecting Dan to pay 90,000 Rupees to be driven 500 kilometers.’
    • ‘The colonel begged me to accompany him to the guard-room, to see the thieving soldier flogged.’
    light-fingered, thievish, larcenous
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mass noun
  • The action of stealing; theft.

    ‘he supplemented his income with petty thieving’
    • ‘To be caught thieving didn't bear thinking about.’
    • ‘Boosting is taking something that you haven't paid for - stealing, shoplifting, thieving, racking - hustling.’
    • ‘A lot of them go out, do car-urging, car-snatches, you know, or some of them go out thieving.’
    • ‘Now that he was done with the thieving, he had to get down.’
    • ‘One major crime is prostitution and the other is thieving.’
    • ‘Those caught thieving something worth more than the price of a goat are sentenced to lose a hand.’
    • ‘She resolves to stop thieving on day.’
    • ‘We are not talking about spontaneous outbreaks of opportunitistic thieving.’
    • ‘In interviews across Baghdad, though, Iraqis said the widespread thieving affected them at least as powerfully on an emotional and moral level.’
    • ‘The Boy remains behind and comments on the cowardice and petty thieving of his associates, whom he plans to leave.’
    • ‘He added that car crimes were more often occurring at night and cars were often stolen Thursday through to Saturday while thieving from cars was more general.’
    • ‘The movie is brimming with witchcraft and wizardry, temptation and all manner of nasty people killing, maiming and thieving.’
    • ‘In these conditions, thieving from the state and 'beating the system' were the things to do to survive.’
    • ‘With her drinking and thieving, his mother proved a lifelong source of embarrassment.’
    • ‘We want crime rates to drop and steps to be taken to convince young criminals that there is an alternative to thieving and breaking the law.’
    • ‘I fully expected a ho-hum exclusive concerning a tugged pigtail or some apple thieving.’
    • ‘I submit that what has been going on her isn't so much a disease as a moral failing, just as lying and thieving are moral failings.’
    • ‘Thieving was fun; thieving from people Shan disliked was best of all.’
    • ‘It was David who told us you could go to jail for thieving from the age of 13 onwards.’
    • ‘Proceeds from his thieving at shops in Lyneham and Wroughton had been used to buy his drugs, she said.’
    theft, stealing, thievery, robbery, larceny, pilfering, pilferage
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