\ ə-ˈmis How to pronounce amiss (audio) \

Definition of amiss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : in a mistaken way : wrongly If you think he is guilty, you judge amiss.
b : astray Something had gone amiss.
2 : in a faulty way : imperfectly practiced more so as not to play the piece amiss



Definition of amiss (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : not being in accordance with right order
2 : faulty, imperfect There's nothing/something amiss with the engine.
3 : out of place in given circumstances usually used with a negative A few remarks may not be amiss here.

Examples of amiss in a Sentence

Adverb I hope that my suggestion that you might be more comfortable in a larger chair was not taken amiss. the reenactment of the Wright Brothers' first flight went amiss when the wind died on the makeshift runway and the plane stopped short in a mud puddle Adjective Some of his assumptions are amiss. The doctor's examination showed that nothing was amiss.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb The whole incident -- from realizing something was going amiss to hitting the water -- only lasted one or two minutes. Leah Asmelash, CNN, 21 Aug. 2019 This connectivity can provide a sense of brain organization, and there's a growing body of evidence that this organization goes amiss in those with neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, 12 Apr. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective At a murder mansion, a spirit box session goes amiss; in New Hampshire UFOs gather in an unusual formation; a musical ghost plays the accordion in Russia. Olivia Mccormack, Washington Post, 23 June 2022 Since the shooting in his home town, however, McLaughlin has been wondering if there’s something amiss in the American approach to firearms. Rachel Monroe, The New Yorker, 16 June 2022 There was no goaltender interference or anything else amiss, but, by rule, Turgeon’s skate couldn’t be in the crease when the puck wasn’t. Gene Myers, Detroit Free Press, 27 Apr. 2022 Leaders must be a support system for their team members and have the innate ability to recognize when something is amiss—including potential personal issues or if a team member is overworked. Tony Butler-sims, Forbes, 22 Apr. 2022 The tests administered by the neurologist, meanwhile, showed nothing obviously amiss in her brain. Ariana Eunjung Cha, Anchorage Daily News, 19 Apr. 2022 But mathematicians want to know whether in some situations — even though nothing might seem amiss at first — the equations could eventually run into trouble. Quanta Magazine, 12 Apr. 2022 At 130 minutes, however, this intimate take on recent history does feel slightly over-inflated, hammering home memories and sentiments that have already hit hard; a little judicious cutting would not go amiss. Guy Lodge, Variety, 14 Feb. 2022 Meanwhile a huge swarm of locusts — make that a huge swarm of huge locusts — has clued Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern), still knocking around since the first movie, that something is amiss. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, 8 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of amiss


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1b


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for amiss


Middle English amis, from a- a- entry 1 + mis miss entry 2

Note: Compare Old Icelandic á mis "passing one another without meeting."


Middle English amis, derivative of amis amiss entry 1

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Time Traveler for amiss

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The first known use of amiss was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Amiss.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for amiss


\ ə-ˈmis \

Kids Definition of amiss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in the wrong way Don't take his criticism amiss.



Kids Definition of amiss (Entry 2 of 2)

: not right : wrong I feel certain something is amiss.

More from Merriam-Webster on amiss

Nglish: Translation of amiss for Spanish Speakers


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