By Deane Barker

Definition: a penalty such as a fine; to take (something) from another person by means of unseemly or deceptive methods.

Why I Looked It Up

Found in The Prize:

Domestic creditors had already been mulcted by inflation.

The implication is that inflation “stole” value from the people who were owed money (the absolute dollars in which they would be repaid would be worth less because of inflation).


Added on

From Teach Yourself To Live:

Ordinary British citizens are apt to read of millionaires, peers, and other wealthier persons, in death or life being mulcted of vast sums with equanimity, if not approval.