WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
spoils sys•tem /ˈspɔɪlz ˌsɪstəm/USA pronunciation  n. [countable]
  • Governmentthe practice in which public offices are filled with supporters of the victorious political party.

  • WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
    spoils sys′tem, 
  • Governmentthe system or practice in which public offices with their emoluments and advantages are at the disposal of the victorious party for its own purposes.
    • 1830–40, American.


    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    spoils system n
    1. chiefly US the practice of filling appointive public offices with friends and supporters of the ruling political party



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