English edit

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Etymology edit

From Ancient Greek κλέπτω (kléptō, I steal) (from Proto-Hellenic *klépťō, ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *klep-) +‎ -maniac.

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /ˌklɛptəˈmeɪniæk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪniæk

Noun edit

kleptomaniac (plural kleptomaniacs)

  1. One who steals compulsively.
    • 1960, P. G. Wodehouse, Jeeves in the Offing, chapter VI and XII:
      “A kleptomaniac,” I said. “Which means, if the term is not familiar to you, a chap who flits hither and thither pinching everything he can lay his hands on. [...] And if ever a man needed to be constantly under an eye, it's the above kleptomaniac. [...] He pinches things. Everything that isn't nailed down is grist to his mill.”
    • 1960, P. G. Wodehouse, Jeeves in the Offing, chapter VIII:
      The dear old room was just as I'd left it, nothing changed, and my first move, of course, was to procure another chair and give the top of the armoire the once-over. It was a set-back to find that the cow-creamer wasn't there. I suppose these kleptomaniacs know a thing or two and don't hide the loot in the obvious place.

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