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Meaning of EXCUSE

Pronunciation:  [n]ik'skyoos, [v]ik'skyooz

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  a poor example; "it was an apology for a meal"; "a poor excuse for an automobile"
  2. [n]  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"
  3. [v]  excuse, overlook, or make allowances for; be lenient with; "excuse someone's behavior"; "She condoned her husband's occasional infidelities"
  4. [v]  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 amy explain her reluctance to date again"
  5. [v]  grant exemption or release to; "Please excuse me from this class"
  6. [v]  ask for permission to be released from an engagement
  7. [v]  defend, explain, clear away, or make excuses for by reasoning; "rationalize the child's seemingly crazy behavior"; "he rationalized his lack of success"
  8. [v]  accept an excuse for; "Please excuse my dirty hands"

EXCUSE is a 6 letter word that starts with E.


 Synonyms: alibi, apologise, apologize, apology, beg off, condone, exculpation, exempt, explain, let off, pardon, rationalise, rationalize, relieve, self-justification
 See Also: absolve, alibi, bespeak, call for, color, colour, defence, defend, defense, example, extenuate, extenuation, fend for, forgive, frank, free, gloss, illustration, instance, justify, mitigate, mitigation, palliate, plead, quest, representative, request, support, vindicate, vindication



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
  1. \Ex*cuse"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Excused}; p. pr. & vb.
    n. {Excusing}.] [OE. escusen, cusen, OF. escuser, excuser, F.
    excuser, fr. L. excusare; ex out + causa cause, causari to
    plead. See {Cause}.]
    1. 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.
             A man's persuasion that a thing is duty, will not
             excuse him from guilt in practicing it, if really
             and indeed it be against Gog's law.   --Abp. Sharp.
    2. 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.
             I must excuse what can not be amended. --Shak.
    3. To regard with indulgence; to view leniently or to
       overlook; to pardon.
             And in our own (excuse some courtly stains.) No
             whiter page than Addison remains.     --Pope.
    4. 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.
             I pray thee have me excused.          --xiv. 19.
    5. To relieve of an imputation by apology or defense; to make
       apology for as not seriously evil; to ask pardon or
       indulgence for.
             Think ye that we excuse ourselves to you? --2 Cor.
                                                   xii. 19.
    Syn: To vindicate; exculpate; absolve; acquit.
    Usage: - {To Pardon}, {Excuse}, {Forgive}. A superior pardons
           as an act of mercy or generosity; either a superior or
           an equal excuses. A crime, great fault, or a grave
           offence, as one against law or morals, may be
           pardoned; a small fault, such as a failure in social
           or conventional obligations, slight omissions or
           neglects may be excused. Forgive relates to offenses
           against one's self, and punishment foregone; as, to
           forgive injuries or one who has injured us; to pardon
           grave offenses, crimes, and criminals; to excuse an
           act of forgetfulness, an unintentional offense. Pardon
           is also a word of courtesy employed in the sense of
  2. \Ex*cuse"\, n. [Cf. F. excuse. See {Excuse}, v. t.]
    1. The act of excusing, apologizing, exculpating, pardoning,
       releasing, and the like; acquittal; release; absolution;
       justification; extenuation.
             Pleading so wisely in excuse of it.   --Shak.
    2. 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.
             Hence with denial vain and coy excuse. --Milton.
    3. That which excuses; that which extenuates or justifies a
       fault. ``It hath the excuse of youth.'' --Shak.
             If eyes were made for seeing. Then beauty is its own
             excuse for being.                     --Emerson.
    Syn: See {Apology}.
Thesaurus Terms
 Related Terms: abject apology, absolution, absolve, acknowledgment, acquit, acquittal, acquittance, alibi, alibi out of, allow, amnesty, apologize for, apology, basis, be blind to, blind, breast-beating, cause, clear, clearance, clearing, cloak, color, compurgation, condonation, condone, confession, contrition, cop-out, cover, cover story, cover with excuses, cover-up, decontaminate, defence, defend, defense, destigmatization, destigmatize, destigmatizing, device, discharge, disculpation, dismiss, dismissal, dispense, dispense from, dispense with, disregard, escape, evasion, except, exculpate, exculpation, exempt, exempt from, exemption, exonerate, exoneration, explain, explanation, extenuate, extenuation, facade, feint, forgive, forgiveness, foundation, free, front, give absolution, give dispensation from, gloss, gloss over, grace, grant amnesty to, grant forgiveness, grant immunity, grant remission, grounds, guise, handle, heedlessness, ignore, immunity, indemnity, indulgence, justification, justify, lame excuse, let go, let off, liberate, lie out of, likely story, locus standi, loophole, make apology for, makeshift, mask, mea culpa, mitigate, mitigation, nonpros, offer excuse for, ostensible motive, out, overlook, palliate, palliation, pardon, pass over, penitence, permit, plea, plead ignorance, poor excuse, pretense, pretension, pretext, protestation, public motive, purgation, purge, purging, put-off, quash the charge, quietus, quittance, rational ground, rationale, rationalization, rationalize, reason, reason for, reason why, redemption, refuge, regrets, release, relieve, remise, remission, remission of sin, remit, reprieve, right, save the necessity, screen, semblance, set free, sham, shift, show, shrift, shrive, shrug off, smoke screen, spare, sparing, squirm out of, stalking-horse, stall, stated cause, stopgap, story, stratagem, substitute, subterfuge, the big idea, the idea, the whatfor, the wherefore, the why, trick, underlying reason, varnish, veil, verdict of acquittal, vindicate, vindication, warrant, way out, whitewash, wink at, withdraw the charge, worm out of