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 (wô′tĕr-gāt′, wŏt′ər-)
A series of scandals occurring during the Nixon administration in which members of the executive branch organized illegal political espionage against their perceived opponents and were charged with violation of the public trust, bribery, contempt of Congress, and attempted obstruction of justice.

[After Watergate, a building complex in Washington, DC, the site of a burglary (1972) that gave rise to the scandals.]


1. (Historical Terms) an incident during the 1972 US presidential campaign, when a group of agents employed by the re-election organization of President Richard Nixon were caught breaking into the Democratic Party headquarters in the Watergate building, Washington, DC. The consequent political scandal was exacerbated by attempts to conceal the fact that senior White House officials had approved the burglary, and eventually forced the resignation of President Nixon
2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) any similar public scandal, esp involving politicians or a possible cover-up. See also -gate

wa′ter gate`

2. a gateway leading to the edge of a body of water, as at a landing.


(ˈwɔ tərˌgeɪt, ˈwɒt ər-)

1. a political scandal during the 1972 presidential campaign, arising from a break-in at Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate building complex in Washington, D.C., and culminating in the resignation of President Nixon.
2. any scandal involving corruption and other abuses of power, and an attempt to conceal these activities from the public.


The scandal over the bugging of Democratic headquarters during the 1972 election campaign, exposed by campaigning journalists. President Nixon was forced to resign in 1974 after admitting false denial of knowledge (1974).
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Watergate - a political scandal involving abuse of power and bribery and obstruction of justiceWatergate - a political scandal involving abuse of power and bribery and obstruction of justice; led to the resignation of Richard Nixon in 1974


nWatergate no art, → die Watergate-Affäre
References in periodicals archive ?
Police cordoned off an area of Watergate Park, which is popular with dog walkers, after the attack was reported at 3.
We are proud to announce The Watergate Hotel in Washington D.
In his book, Dean states that he spent four years listening to 634 tapes that previously had not been transcribed by Kutler, and proceeded to offer more details about the Watergate coverup, explaining that new technologies enabled him to hear things that others had missed.
Nixon's immediate problem that October was Archibald Cox, the Watergate special prosecutor Nixon himself had appointed, who was demanding that the president release tape recordings that he, Nixon, had made of his conversations in the Oval Office.
The second was Eugene Bachinski, who had police sources who provided Woodward notes from the address books of two of the Watergate burglars, including the curious notations under conspirator E.
Responding to a request from Texas history professor Luke Nichter, who is seeking access to Watergate burglary documents, the Department of Justice termed it as a legitimate one, Fox News reports.
Readers who deem the book's liberties too free can stick to the tonnage of Watergate memoirs, transcripts, investigative reports and marginalia.
Forty years later, the Watergate affair and Nixon's subsequent resignation--the only presidential resignation in U.
It could have neither, with the president preoccupied by Watergate and the Congress concerned with impeachment, he said.
Work begins on January 18, on renewing an essential gas main in Lower Watergate Street - the latest phase of the city's pounds 20m renewal programme driven by the Health and Safety Executive.
Nixon, 61, had been charged by the House Judiciary Committee with "high crimes and misdemeanours" relating to a 1972 break-in at the offices of the Democratic National Committee in the Watergate complex.
A little late, and a little tired, we arrived at The Watergate Bay Hotel complex, a couple of miles outside the famous surfing citadel of Newquay, and hastily rearranged a booking for dinner at The Brasserie, one of the hotel's two main eateries, before heading to our room.