convict

adjective
con·​vict | \ kən-ˈvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \

Definition of convict

 (Entry 1 of 3)

archaic
: having been convicted

convict

verb
con·​vict | \ kən-ˈvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \
convicted; convicting; convicts

Definition of convict (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to find or prove to be guilty The jury convicted them of fraud.
2 : to convince of error or sinfulness

intransitive verb

: to find a defendant guilty Remarkably, two of the jurors boldly dug in their heels and pressed to convict.— John Grisham

convict

noun
con·​vict | \ ˈkän-ˌvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \

Definition of convict (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a person convicted of and under sentence for a crime
2 : a person serving a usually long prison sentence

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for convict

Synonyms: Verb

condemn

Synonyms: Noun

con, jailbird

Antonyms: Verb

absolve, acquit, clear, exculpate, exonerate, vindicate

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of convict in a Sentence

Verb

There is sufficient evidence to convict. He was convicted in federal court. The jury convicted them on three counts of fraud. Have you ever been convicted of a crime?

Noun

a warning that the three escaped convicts were armed and dangerous
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The law contains measures to wipe clean the records of those previously convicted of cannabis offences. The Economist, "More liberal, functional Illinois," 21 June 2019 Putting individuals convicted of crimes, especially violent crimes, in prison is thought to make the rest of us safer. David J. Harding, Scientific American, "Do Prisons Make Us Safer?," 21 June 2019 Taking away the right to vote from people convicted of crimes isn’t unique to the United States. Annalisa Merelli, Quartz, "The US is the only democracy to permanently deny voting rights to felons for all crimes," 19 June 2019 And after House had the audacity to bring her suit, in 1917 the MRB&PA leader was arrested, convicted of mail fraud and jailed. Arica L. Coleman, Time, "The House Hearing on Slavery Reparations Is Part of a Long History. Here's What to Know on the Idea's Tireless Early Advocates," 18 June 2019 Criminal records Michigan: No provisions to pardon or expunge the criminal records of people convicted of marijuana crimes was included in the state’s marijuana legalization ballot proposal. Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan could face competition after Illinois legislature approves recreational pot," 18 June 2019 He was sentenced to death in 2015 over a jailbreak during the 2011 uprising and to life in prison on espionage charges after being convicted of conspiring with Palestinian group Hamas, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and other foreign organizations. Magdy Samaan And Bianca Britton, CNN, "Morsy's son blames Egyptian regime for 'slow deliberate medical murdering' of ex-President," 18 June 2019 Now, people convicted of certain crimes three times faced an automatic sentence of life in prison without the possibility of early release. Matthew Van Meter, The New Republic, "The Judge and the Three-Strikes Convict," 17 June 2019 When a white woman was raped and brutally beaten in Central Park in 1989, five black teenagers were accused and convicted of the crime, based on confessions later found to have been coerced. Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, "Review: ‘The Central Park Five’ Turns Injustice Into Opera," 16 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Supreme Court last year upheld the Delhi High Court's death penalty order for the four convicts. Fox News, "India court rejects death sentence appeal in 2012 gang rape," 10 July 2018 Two other convicts are on death row over the bombing of the Australian Embassy here in 2004. Anita Rachman, WSJ, "Prosecutors Seek Death Penalty for Alleged Islamic State Terror Leader," 18 May 2018 The arguments advanced on Johnson’s behalf were essentially the same made for thousands of other nonviolent drug convicts whose petitions for presidential clemency have been languishing at the Justice Department. Peter Baker, BostonGlobe.com, "Trump offers clemency to imprisoned woman after push by Kardashian West," 7 June 2018 His character in Masterpiece PBS's Les Misérables, the long-suffering ex-convict Jean Valjean, does not. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Why Les Misérables's Dominic West Thinks Jean Valjean Is a Better Hero Than Spiderman," 15 Apr. 2019 After an ominous warning from one of the prison guards, the mystery convict is revealed — and it’s none other than Cletus Kasady, played by Woody Harrelson. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "Venom’s 2 end-credits scenes, explained," 5 Oct. 2018 Terrorism suspects and convicts being held there, most of whom were linked to the Islamic State, staged a two-day uprising, seizing weapons and hostages and killing five guards before eventually surrendering. Joe Cochrane, New York Times, "Indonesia Sword Attack on Police Follows String of Deadly Bombings," 16 May 2018 Patrick Morrisey earned that honor, vanquishing Jenkins and former coal mine executive and convict Don Blankenship. Chad Pergram, Fox News, "House Republicans had a bad night – can they prevent a bad November?," 10 May 2018 Sean Pelzer didn’t fit the standard profile of a State House lobbyist — not even a lobbyist on behalf of ex-convicts. Adrian Walker, BostonGlobe.com, "Ex-offenders lose a tireless advocate," 3 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'convict.' 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 convict

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for convict

Verb, Adjective, and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French convicter, from Latin convictus, past participle of convincere to refute, convict

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about convict

Statistics for convict

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for convict

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for convict

convict

verb

English Language Learners Definition of convict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

law : to prove that someone is guilty of a crime in a court of law

convict

noun

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

: a person who has been found guilty of a crime and sent to prison

convict

verb
con·​vict | \ kən-ˈvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \
convicted; convicting

Kids Definition of convict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to prove or find guilty

convict

noun
con·​vict | \ ˈkän-ˌvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \

Kids Definition of convict (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person serving a prison sentence

convict

transitive verb
con·​vict | \ kən-ˈvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \

Legal Definition of convict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to find guilty of a criminal offense was convicted of fraud — compare acquit

convict

noun
con·​vict | \ ˈkän-ˌvikt How to pronounce convict (audio) \

Legal Definition of convict (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person convicted of and serving a sentence for a crime

History and Etymology for convict

Transitive verb

Latin convictus past participle of convincere to find guilty, prove, from com- with, together + vincer to conquer

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on convict

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with convict

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for convict

Spanish Central: Translation of convict

Nglish: Translation of convict for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of convict for Arabic Speakers

Comments on convict

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

WORD OF THE DAY

showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!