What does Excuse mean?

Definitions for Excuse
ɪkˈskyuz; -ˈskyusExcuse

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word Excuse.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. excuse, alibi, exculpation, self-justificationnoun

    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. excusenoun

    a note explaining an absence

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

  3. apology, excuseverb

    a poor example

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

  4. excuse, pardonverb

    accept an excuse for

    "Please excuse my dirty hands"

  5. excuse, relieve, let off, exemptverb

    grant exemption or release to

    "Please excuse me from this class"

  6. excuse, explainverb

    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, rationaliseverb

    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 offverb

    ask for permission to be released from an engagement

  9. excuse, condoneverb

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

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


  1. excusenoun

    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. excuseverb

    To forgive; to pardon.

    I excused him his transgressions.

  3. excuseverb

    To allow to leave.

  4. excuseverb

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

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Excusenoun

    Etymology: from the verb.

    I was set upon by some of your servants, whom because I have in my just defence evil entreated, I came to make my excuse to you. Philip Sidney.

    Be gone, I will not hear thy vain excuse;
    But, as thou lov’st thy life, make speed from hence. William Shakespeare.

    As good success admits no examination, so the contrary allows of no excuse, how reasonable or just soever. Walter Raleigh.

    We find out some excuse or other for deferring good resolutions, ’till our intended retreat is cut off by death. Addison.

    Heav’n put it in thy mind to take it hence,
    That thou might’st win the more thy father’s love,
    Pleading so wisely in excuse of it. William Shakespeare, Henry IV.

    Let no vain hope your easy mind seduce;
    For rich ill poets are without excuse. Wentworth Dillon.

    Nothing but love this patience could produce;
    And I allow your rage that kind excuse. John Dryden, Aurengzebe.

  2. To EXCUSEverb

    Etymology: excuso, Latin.

    Bad men excuse their faults, good men will leave them;
    He acts the third crime that defends the first. Ben Jonson, Catil.

    I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee, have me excused. Luke xiv. 19.

    Laud attended throughout that whole journey, which he was not obliged to do, and no doubt would have been excused from it. Edward Hyde.

    Nor could the real danger of leaving their dwellings to go up to the temple, excuse their journey. Robert South, Sermons.

    O thou, whoe’er thou art, excuse the force
    These men have us’d; and O befriend our course. Addison.

    Excuse some courtly strains;
    No whiter page than Addison’s remains. Alexander Pope.

    Think you that we excuse ourselves unto you? 2 Cor. xii.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Excuseverb

    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. Excuseverb

    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. Excuseverb

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

  4. Excuseverb

    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. Excuseverb

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

  6. Excuseverb

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

  7. Excuseverb

    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. Excuseverb

    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.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Excuse

    eks-kūz′, v.t. to free from blame or guilt: to forgive: to free from an obligation: to release, dispense with: to make an apology or ask pardon for.—n. (eks-kūs′) a plea offered in extenuation of a fault: indulgence.—adj. Excus′able, admitting of justification.—n. Excus′ableness.—adv. Excus′ably.—adj. Excus′atory, making or containing excuse: apologetic.—Excuse me, an expression used as an apology for any slight impropriety, or for controverting a statement that has been made. [L. excusāreex, from, causa, a cause, accusation.]

Matched Categories

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

How to pronounce Excuse?

How to say Excuse in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Excuse in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Excuse in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Examples of Excuse in a Sentence

  1. Gina Rodriguez:

    But if you’re pregnant….'Excuse me sir we’re really hungry,'.

  2. Alison Parker:

    There's no excuse in doing nothing.

  3. Bob Scanlan:

    It was a celebration and a reason for their staff and friends to have a party more than anything else, but it was certainly well-executed and thought out, it wasn't a drop-of-a-hat type event, it was all about just having an opportunity to reward the staff, an excuse to get together and celebrate and have a good group. It wasn't really political.

  4. Graham Secker:

    There is quite a big discussion in the market on whether the consensus is too bullish, or if we need to have a pullback, i think this is more about the fact the markets had a strong run over the past few months. Maybe it gives people an excuse for some profit-taking.

  5. Brandon A. Trean:

    Distractions don't exist. We either procrastinate or we are committed. What we call distractions are simply an excuse to procrastinate further.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Excuse

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • غفر, اعتذر, عذرArabic
  • оправдавам, прощавам, извинение, оправданиеBulgarian
  • omluvit, omluva, výmluva, záminkaCzech
  • Ausrede, entschuldigen, verzeihen, sich entschuldigenGerman
  • senkulpigoEsperanto
  • excusar, excusa, perdonarSpanish
  • veruke, tekosyyFinnish
  • excuse, justifier, excuser, prétexte, pardonnerFrench
  • leithscéalIrish
  • leisgeul, mathScottish Gaelic
  • תירוץ, אמתלהHebrew
  • mentségHungarian
  • exkuzoIdo
  • scusarsi, giustificarsi, scusa, pretesto, perdonare, scusareItalian
  • 言い訳をする, 言い訳, 口実, 弁解, 許すJapanese
  • excuso, īgnōscō, utior, mihi īgnōscōLatin
  • takunga, takutakungaMāori
  • ക്ഷമിയ്ക്കുക, ഒഴിവുകഴിവ്, ക്ഷമാപണംMalayalam
  • goedpraten, verontschuldigen, excuus, uitvlucht, excuseren, vergevenDutch
  • unnskyldning, tilgiNorwegian
  • wybaczyć, usprawiedliwićPolish
  • perdoar, desculpar, desculpa, desculpar-sePortuguese
  • scuzaRomanian
  • извинить, оправдание, прощать, извиняться, отговорка, оправдать, извинение, извинять, простить, оправдыватьRussian
  • ursäkta, urskuldra, ursäktSwedish
  • patawarin, hayaan, magpatawad, dahilanTagalog
  • bahaneTurkish
  • вибачтеUkrainian

Get even more translations for Excuse »


Find a translation for the Excuse definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these Excuse definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "Excuse." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 2 Dec. 2022. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/Excuse>.

    Are we missing a good definition for Excuse? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from others
    • A. appellative
    • B. eminent
    • C. eloquent
    • D. aculeate

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for Excuse: