noun, plural mo·nop·o·lies.
- exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market, or a control that makes possible the manipulation of prices.Compare , .
- an exclusive privilege to carry on a business, traffic, or service, granted by a government.
- the exclusive possession or control of something.
- something that is the subject of such control, as a commodity or service.
- a company or group that has such control.
- the market condition that exists when there is only one seller.
- (initial capital letter) a board game in which a player attempts to gain a monopoly of real estate by advancing around the board and purchasing property, acquiring capital by collecting rent from other players whose pieces land on that property.
noun plural -lies
- exclusive control of the market supply of a product or service
- an enterprise exercising this control
- the product or service so controlled
- law the exclusive right or privilege granted to a person, company, etc, by the state to purchase, manufacture, use, or sell some commodity or to carry on trade in a specified country or area
- exclusive control, possession, or use of something
- trademark a board game for two to six players who throw dice to advance their tokens around a board, the object being to acquire the property on which their tokens land
“exclusive control of a commodity or trade,” 1530s, from Latin monopolium, from Greek monopolion “right of exclusive sale,” from + polein “to sell,” from PIE root *pel- (5) “to sell” (cf. Sanskrit panate “barters, purchases,” Lithuanian pelnas “gain,” Old Church Slavonic splenu, Russian polon “prey, booty,” Old Norse falr, Dutch veil, German feil “for sale, venal”).
Alternative form monopole (1540s, from the Old French form of the word) was common in 16c. The popular board game, invented by Charles Darrow, is from 1935. Monopoly money “unreal currency” is attested from 1972, in reference to the paper used in the game.
The exclusive control by one company of aor product.