Etymology
Advertisement

espionage (n.)

1793, from French espionnage "spying," from espionner "to spy," from espion "a spy" (16c.), probably via Old Italian spione from a Germanic source akin to Old High German spehon "to spy" (see spy (v.)). For initial e- see e-. Middle English had espiouress "female spy" (early 15c.).

updated on December 07, 2020

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of espionage from WordNet

espionage (n.)
the systematic use of spies to get military or political secrets;
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.