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err

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verb \ˈer, ˈər\

Simple Definition of err

  • : to make a mistake

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of err

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 archaic :  stray

  3. 2 a :  to make a mistake <erred in his calculations> <erred on the side of caution> b :  to violate an accepted standard of conduct

Examples of err in a sentence

  1. I may have erred in my calculations.

  2. The court erred in refusing to allow bail.



Is it human to err?

Many people are familiar with the word err from encountering it in the epigram “to err is human; to forgive, divine.” This phrase is found in Alexander Pope’s An Essay on Criticism, from 1711. Earlier expressions of the same sentiment exist, as in Thomas Jones’ 1678 book, Of the Heart, and its Right Soveraign, which contains the line “to err, is human, to recover, is Angelical; to persevere is Diabolical.”

Err is also often found in the phrase err on the side of caution, to suggest that being overly cautious is better than not being cautious enough.

Err stems from the Latin word errare, meaning “to stray, wander,” and it retained that meaning when it first entered English. We find the same Latin ancestor at the root of the words error, erratic, and erroneous.

Origin and Etymology of err

Middle English, from Anglo-French errer, from Latin errare to wander, err; akin to Old English ierre wandering, perverse, Gothic airzeis deceived


First Known Use: 14th century



ERR Defined for Kids

err

play
verb \ˈer, ˈər\

Definition of err for Students

erred

erring

  1. :  to make a mistake




Law Dictionary

err

play
intransitive verb \ˈer, ˈər\

Legal Definition of err

  1. :  to make an error <the court erred in denying the motion>





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