Etymology
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defalcate (v.)

1530s, "to lop off, take away or deduct a part of," from Medieval Latin defalcatus, past participle of defalcare, from de "off, away" (see de-) + Latin falx, falcem "sickle, scythe, pruning hook" (see falcate). Modern scientific use dates from 1808.

Origin and meaning of defalcate

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Definitions of defalcate

defalcate (v.)
appropriate (as property entrusted to one's care) fraudulently to one's own use;
Synonyms: embezzle / peculate / misappropriate / malversate
From wordnet.princeton.edu