Definitions for Excuseɪkˈskyuz; -ˈskyus

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word Excuse

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

ex•cuse*ɪkˈskyuz; -ˈskyus(v.; n.)-cused, -cus•ing

  1. (v.t.)to regard or judge with indulgence; pardon or forgive; overlook (a fault, error, etc.).

  2. to offer an apology for; seek to remove the blame of:

    He excused his absence by saying that he was ill.

  3. to serve as an apology or justification for; justify:

    Ignorance of the law excuses no one.

  4. to release from an obligation or duty:

    to be excused from jury duty.

  5. to seek or obtain exemption or release for (oneself):

    to excuse oneself from a meeting.

  6. to refrain from exacting; remit; dispense with:

    to excuse a debt.

  7. to allow (someone) to leave:

    If you'll excuse me, I have to make a telephone call.

    Category: Common Vocabulary

  8. (n.)an explanation offered as a reason for being excused; a plea offered in extenuation of a fault or for release from an obligation, promise, etc.

  9. a ground or reason for excusing or being excused:

    Ignorance is no excuse.

  10. the act of excusing someone or something.

  11. a pretext or subterfuge.

  12. an inferior or inadequate specimen of something specified:

    His latest effort is a poor excuse for a poem.

Idioms for excuse:

  1. Excuse me, (used as a polite expression in requesting permission to pass or when interrupting or disagreeing with someone).

    Category: Idiom

* Syn: excuse , forgive , pardon imply being lenient or giving up the wish to punish. excuse means to overlook some (usu.) slight offense, because of circumstance, realization that it was unintentional, or the like: to excuse rudeness. forgive is applied to excusing more serious offenses; the person wronged not only overlooks the offense but harbors no ill feeling against the offender: to forgive and forget. pardon often applies to an act of leniency or mercy by an official or superior; it usu. involves a serious offense or crime: The governor was asked to pardon the condemned criminal.

Origin of excuse:

1175–1225; ME escusen < OF escuser < L excūsāre=ex-ex -1+-cūsāre, der. of causacause


Princeton's WordNet

  1. excuse, alibi, exculpation, self-justification(noun)

    a defense of some offensive behavior or some failure to keep a promise etc.

    "he kept finding excuses to stay"; "every day he had a new alibi for not getting a job"; "his transparent self-justification was unacceptable"

  2. excuse(noun)

    a note explaining an absence

    "he had to get his mother to write an excuse for him"

  3. apology, excuse(verb)

    a poor example

    "it was an apology for a meal"; "a poor excuse for an automobile"

  4. excuse, pardon(verb)

    accept an excuse for

    "Please excuse my dirty hands"

  5. excuse, relieve, let off, exempt(verb)

    grant exemption or release to

    "Please excuse me from this class"

  6. excuse, explain(verb)

    serve as a reason or cause or justification of

    "Your need to sleep late does not excuse your late arrival at work"; "Her recent divorce may explain her reluctance to date again"

  7. apologize, apologise, excuse, justify, rationalize, rationalise(verb)

    defend, explain, clear away, or make excuses for by reasoning

    "rationalize the child's seemingly crazy behavior"; "he rationalized his lack of success"

  8. excuse, beg off(verb)

    ask for permission to be released from an engagement

  9. excuse, condone(verb)

    excuse, overlook, or make allowances for; be lenient with

    "excuse someone's behavior"; "She condoned her husband's occasional infidelities"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. excuse(noun)ɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    an explanation for doing sth, used to try to avoid criticism

    his excuse for being late; If you don't want to go, just make an excuse.

  2. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    a reason for doing what you want

    A wedding is a good excuse for buying new clothes.

  3. excuse(verb)ɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    indicates you want sb to repeat what they said

    "I'm going home now.""Excuse me?"

  4. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    politely indicates you want sb's attention or are sorry for interrupting

    Excuse me, could you hold this for me.

  5. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    politely indicates you want sb to move

    Excuse me, could I get past you?

  6. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    ≠ blame

    Please excuse my terrible English.

  7. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    to give a reason to make sth seem less bad

    Nothing can excuse his bad language.

  8. excuseɪkˈskyuz; n. -ˈskyus

    to give permission to leave or not do

    May I be excused? I don't feel well.; The coach excused him from training.


  1. excuse(Noun)

    An explanation designed to avoid or alleviate guilt or negative judgment.

    Tell me why you were late uE000123945uE001 and I don't want to hear any excuses!

  2. excuse(Verb)

    To forgive; to pardon.

    I excused him his transgressions.

  3. excuse(Verb)

    To allow to leave.

  4. excuse(Verb)

    To provide an excuse for; to explain, with the aim of alleviating guilt or negative judgement.

    You know he shouldn't have done it, so don't try to excuse his behavior!

  5. Origin: From excusen, from escuser, from excuso, from ex + causa; see cause and accuse.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Excuse(verb)

    to free from accusation, or the imputation of fault or blame; to clear from guilt; to release from a charge; to justify by extenuating a fault; to exculpate; to absolve; to acquit

  2. Excuse(verb)

    to pardon, as a fault; to forgive entirely, or to admit to be little censurable, and to overlook; as, we excuse irregular conduct, when extraordinary circumstances appear to justify it

  3. Excuse(verb)

    to regard with indulgence; to view leniently or to overlook; to pardon

  4. Excuse(verb)

    to free from an impending obligation or duty; hence, to disengage; to dispense with; to release by favor; also, to remit by favor; not to exact; as, to excuse a forfeiture

  5. Excuse(verb)

    to relieve of an imputation by apology or defense; to make apology for as not seriously evil; to ask pardon or indulgence for

  6. Excuse(verb)

    the act of excusing, apologizing, exculpating, pardoning, releasing, and the like; acquittal; release; absolution; justification; extenuation

  7. Excuse(verb)

    that which is offered as a reason for being excused; a plea offered in extenuation of a fault or irregular deportment; apology; as, an excuse for neglect of duty; excuses for delay of payment

  8. Excuse(verb)

    that which excuses; that which extenuates or justifies a fault


  1. Excuse

    In jurisprudence, an excuse or justification is a defense to criminal charges that is distinct from an exculpation. Exculpation is related concept which reduces or extinguishes a person's culpability and therefore a person's liability to pay compensation to the victim of a tort in the civil law. The "excuse" provides a mitigating factor for a group of persons sharing a common characteristic. Justification, as in justifiable homicide, vindicates or shows the justice. Thus, society approves of the purpose or motives underpinning some actions or the consequences flowing from them, and distinguishes those where the behavior cannot be approved but some excuse may be found in the characteristics of the defendant, e.g. that the accused was a serving police officer or suffering from a mental illness. Thus, a justification describes the quality of the act, whereas an excuse relates to the status or capacity in the accused. These factors can affect the resulting judgment which may be an acquittal, or in the case of a conviction may mitigate sentencing.

British National Corpus

  1. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Excuse' in Written Corpus Frequency: #1312

  2. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Excuse' in Nouns Frequency: #1660

  3. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Excuse' in Verbs Frequency: #795

Translations for Excuse

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


to forgive or pardon

Excuse me; – can you tell me the time?; I'll excuse your carelessness this time.

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