ac·​cu·​sa·​tion | \ ˌa-kyə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce accusation (audio) , -(ˌ)kyü- \

Definition of accusation

1 : a charge of wrongdoing The evidence confirms the accusations made against him. She denied the accusation.
2 : the act of accusing someone : the state or fact of being accused

Examples of accusation in a Sentence

Investigators have made accusations of corruption against a group of former officials. The police are investigating serious accusations of wrongdoing. He denied the accusation that he had lied to the police. There was a hint of accusation in his voice when he asked her where she had been.
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Recent Examples on the Web The government faced a formal accusation of genocide at the International Court of Justice at the Hague. Star Tribune, "Myanmar coup is an outrage," 1 Feb. 2021 When asked about her accusation by NBC-affiliate 11Alive News, Greene stood by her claim, insisting that anyone who received a positive COVID-19 test result has Pelosi to blame. Sarah Midkiff,, "QAnon Enthusiast Marjorie Taylor Greene Has A New Conspiracy Theory About Nancy Pelosi," 13 Jan. 2021 That resistance comes even as the president digs in on a new veto threat over his accusation of social media bias amid his effort to overturn his loss to Democrat Joe Biden. Tom Benning, Dallas News, "House lawmakers, ignoring Trump veto threat, are poised to pass defense bill that would rename Fort Hood," 8 Dec. 2020 Odey is now facing a court trial next year after pleading not guilty to an accusation of groping a young female banking employee more than 20 years ago. Nishant Kumar,, "Odey Steps Down From Running His Firm to Focus on Funds," 3 Nov. 2020 However, prosecutors are not in complete agreement about whether there was the intention by rioters to hurt or kill lawmakers, an accusation that's carried weight across social media and some news outlets. Mica Soellner, Washington Examiner, "Lindsey Graham: Pardoning Capitol rioters would 'destroy' Trump," 17 Jan. 2021 One of the wildest of those claims was an accusation that officials in at least four states used ballot tabulators built by Dominion Voting Systems to flip hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of votes from Mr. Trump to Mr. Biden. New York Times, "Trump’s Fraud Claims Died in Court, but the Myth of Stolen Elections Lives On," 26 Dec. 2020 As the historian Ed West has noted, nostalgia is usually an accusation, a negative charge to refute. Tom Mctague, The Atlantic, "Why Britain’s Brexit Mayhem Was Worth It," 24 Dec. 2020 The states’ suit also repeats some allegations made in the Justice Department case, such as an accusation that Google foreclosed competition through a deal with Apple Inc. AAPL 0.70% to make Google the default search engine on iPhones. Ryan Tracy, WSJ, "More States Hit Google Over Alleged Monopoly Conduct," 17 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accusation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accusation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for accusation

Middle English accusacioun, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin accūsātiōn-, accūsātiō, from accūsāre "to blame, charge with a crime" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns — more at accuse

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Time Traveler for accusation

Time Traveler

The first known use of accusation was in the 14th century

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Statistics for accusation

Last Updated

27 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Accusation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for accusation



English Language Learners Definition of accusation

: a claim that someone has done something wrong or illegal : a charge that someone has committed a fault or crime


ac·​cu·​sa·​tion | \ ˌa-kyə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce accusation (audio) \

Kids Definition of accusation

: a claim that someone has done something bad or illegal


ac·​cu·​sa·​tion | \ ˌa-kyə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce accusation (audio) \

Legal Definition of accusation

1 : a formal charge of wrongdoing, delinquency, or fault the accused shall enjoy the right…to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusationU.S. Constitution amend. VI — compare allegation, indictment, information
2 : the offense or fault of which one is accused the accusation was murder

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