censure

noun
cen·​sure | \ ˈsen(t)-shər How to pronounce censure (audio) \

Definition of censure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a judgment involving condemnation unorthodox practices awaiting the censure of the city council
2 : the act of blaming or condemning sternly The country faces international censure for its alleged involvement in the assassination.
3 : an official reprimand The lawyer's misconduct resulted in a letter of censure from the judge.
4 archaic : opinion, judgment

censure

verb
censured; censuring\ ˈsen(t)-​sh(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce censuring (audio) \

Definition of censure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to find fault with and criticize as blameworthy She would tell him it was … no sign of a good pastor to be eternally censuring his flock.— Charlotte Brontë
b : to formally reprimand (someone) : to express official censure of (someone) While a vote to censure the president has no legal ramifications, it is a significant and rare symbolic vote of disapproval.— Emma Loop
2 obsolete : estimate, judge

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from censure

Verb

censurer \ ˈsen(t)-​shər-​ər How to pronounce censurer (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for censure

Verb

criticize, reprehend, censure, reprobate, condemn, denounce mean to find fault with openly. criticize implies finding fault especially with methods or policies or intentions. criticized the police for using violence reprehend implies both criticism and severe rebuking. reprehends the self-centeredness of today's students censure carries a strong suggestion of authority and of reprimanding. a Senator formally censured by his peers reprobate implies strong disapproval or firm refusal to sanction. reprobated his son's unconventional lifestyle condemn usually suggests an unqualified and final unfavorable judgment. condemned the government's racial policies denounce adds to condemn the implication of a public declaration. a pastoral letter denouncing abortion

Censure Has an Offical Connotation

Verb

Censure and its synonyms criticize, reprehend,condemn, and denounce all essentially mean "to find fault with openly." Additionally, censure carries a strong suggestion of authority and often refers to an official action. Criticize implies finding fault with someone’s methods, policies, or intentions, as in "the commentator criticized the manager’s bullpen strategy." Reprehend implies sharp criticism or disapproval, as in "a teacher who reprehends poor grammar." Condemn usually suggests a final unfavorable judgment, as in "the group condemned the court’s decision to execute the criminal." Denounce adds to condemn the implication of a public declaration, as in "her letter to the editor denounced the corrupt actions of the mayor’s office."

Examples of censure in a Sentence

Noun The country faces international censure for its alleged involvement in the assassination. a rare censure of a senator by the full United States Senate for misconduct Verb He was censured by the committee for his failure to report the problem. a vote to censure the President for conduct that was unbecoming to his office
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The move has met with widespread international censure, including U.S. and European Union sanctions on Russia. SFChronicle.com, "News of the Day From Around the World," 23 Dec. 2019 Our view is that Trump deserves censure, not impeachment and removal from office. Chicago Tribune, Twin Cities, "Other voices: Get on with Trump’s impeachment trial. Then comes Election Day," 22 Dec. 2019 There’s also been much debate about whether the Senate can impose a punishment short of removal, like censure. Pete Gelling, Quartz, "How the impeachment process works," 24 Sep. 2019 Seventeen shows in Brooklyn kick off the gambit, with many tickets pricy enough to deserve censure by Elizabeth Warren. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Madonna at War," 20 Sep. 2019 Sanctions should be expanded to include withholding state funds, fines, censure, referral for criminal charges and removal of disobedient school officials. Skyler Swisher, sun-sentinel.com, "School safety plans rely on ‘chewing gum, duct tape and hope.’ Lawmakers vow to act.," 12 Dec. 2019 Included was a quote from U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot, who said there wouldn’t be Republican support for censure. Laura Hancock, cleveland, "Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s office proposes plan to pool opioid settlement money: Capitol Letter," 6 Dec. 2019 Vicil Anaya received a written censure as punishment, records show. David Harris, orlandosentinel.com, "4 Orlando police officers were accused of excessive force in 2018. Here’s what happened," 2 Dec. 2019 This euphemistic tsk-tsk projects the prim censure of a mother alarmed that her daughter’s low-cut blouse is too revealing for church. Lionel Shriver, Harper's magazine, "Lefty Lingo," 25 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Softer option: Politico reporters Burgess Everett and Melanie Zanona interviewed Republicans in Congress about possibly censuring President Donald Trump, instead of doing nothing or going the impeachment route of House Democrats. Laura Hancock, cleveland, "Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s office proposes plan to pool opioid settlement money: Capitol Letter," 6 Dec. 2019 Highlights from the show: In an effort to sway public opinion in his favor, McCarthy denounced the Senate's move in censuring him as ''a lynch party . . . CBS News, "Transcript: Joe McCarthy talks Senate censure on "Face the Nation" November 7, 1954," 7 Nov. 2019 Late Monday, Democrats in the House voted to kill a resolution supported by Republicans that would have censured Adam Schiff, the Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. Emily Tillett, CBS News, "Trump urges Republicans to get tougher on impeachment — live updates," 21 Oct. 2019 Democrats have also introduced measures that would censure Mr. King, a more formal admonishment against the lawmaker. Reid J. Epstein, WSJ, "House Lawmakers Formally Admonish Rep. Steve King for Racist Comments," 15 Jan. 2019 This is not the first time Buttigieg has been censured for his alliance with an organization that has a controversial track record on LGBTQ rights. NBC News, "Pete Buttigieg criticized for volunteering with Salvation Army," 4 Dec. 2019 McCarthy was censured just one month after his appearance on the show. CBS News, "Transcript: Joe McCarthy talks Senate censure on "Face the Nation" November 7, 1954," 7 Nov. 2019 Most of the conduct that was censured occurred after Paraskevas left as CFO in November 2012. Jack Farchy, Bloomberg.com, "The Men Who Would Be King of Glencore Move Into the Spotlight," 29 Oct. 2019 The intense pressure on the NBA comes after companies like Cathay Pacific Airways were censured by Beijing after their employees expressed support for the movement in Hong Kong. BostonGlobe.com, "RENÉE GRAHAM: NBA fights for dollars as Hong Kong protesters fight for their lives," 9 Oct. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of censure

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1587, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for censure

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French censure, borrowed from Latin cēnsūa "office of censor, assessment, moral oversight," from cēnsēre "to give as an opinion, perform the duties of a censor" + -ūra -ure — more at censor entry 1

Verb

derivative of censure entry 1, probably after Middle French censurer

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about censure

Time Traveler for censure

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast about censure

Statistics for censure

Last Updated

4 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Censure.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/censurer. Accessed 24 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for censure

censure

noun
How to pronounce censure (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of censure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

formal : official strong criticism

censure

verb

English Language Learners Definition of censure (Entry 2 of 2)

formal : to officially criticize (someone or something) strongly and publicly

censure

noun
cen·​sure | \ ˈsen-shər How to pronounce censure (audio) \

Kids Definition of censure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act of finding fault with or blaming
2 : an official criticism

censure

verb
censured; censuring

Kids Definition of censure (Entry 2 of 2)

: to find fault with especially publicly

censure

noun
cen·​sure | \ ˈsen-chər How to pronounce censure (audio) \

Legal Definition of censure

: an expression of official disapproval a House resolution approving a censure of the representative

Other Words from censure

censure transitive verb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on censure

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for censure

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with censure

Spanish Central: Translation of censure

Nglish: Translation of censure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of censure for Arabic Speakers

Comments on censure

What made you want to look up censure? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a feeling of well-being or elation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!