er·​ro·​ne·​ous i-ˈrō-nē-əs How to pronounce erroneous (audio)
: containing or characterized by error : mistaken
erroneous assumptions
gave an erroneous impression
archaic : wandering
erroneously adverb
erroneousness noun

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How to Define Erroneous

Erroneous basically means "containing errors", and, since most of us are constantly suffering from mistaken notions, the word is often used in front of words such as "assumption" and "idea". It's also used to describe the kind of mistaken information that can lead to erroneous theories, erroneous conclusions, and erroneous decisions.

Examples of erroneous in a Sentence

When you're done, the programs scour your return for potential problems and erroneous data and let you correct them. Then, poof! Either print out your 1040 and related documents or follow the software prompts to file electronically. Kathy Yakal, PC Magazine, 9 Mar. 1999
Here we come face-to-face with the uncompromising rules of golf as Mr. Dobereiner recounts how Roberto de Vincenzo lost the 1968 Masters Tournament by a single stroke because he signed an erroneous scorecard. Robert R. Harris, New York Times Book Review, 21 Oct. 1984
To say truth, nothing is more erroneous than the common observation, that men who are ill-natured and quarrelsome when they are drunk, are very worthy persons when they are sober: for drink, in reality, doth not reverse nature, or create passions in men which did not exist in them before. Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, 1749
a poorly researched news article about the new virus that was filled with much erroneous information
Recent Examples on the Web Ground controllers have repeatedly reset the troublesome gyro, only for the erroneous readings to soon reappear. Lee Billings, Scientific American, 5 June 2024 An erroneous takeoff can occur when errors are made during the calculation and entry of take-off performance parameters during preflight planning, according to the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). Alison Fox, Travel + Leisure, 5 June 2024 If the cost looks erroneous, please email for more information. Bay Area News Group, The Mercury News, 4 June 2024 This action follows Min’s unfounded and erroneous allegations against ILLIT, a group of artists represented by BELIFT LAB. Jeff Benjamin, Billboard, 22 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for erroneous 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'erroneous.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Latin erroneus, from erron-, erro wanderer, from errare — see err

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of erroneous was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near erroneous

Cite this Entry

“Erroneous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


er·​ro·​ne·​ous ir-ˈō-nē-əs How to pronounce erroneous (audio)
: being wrong or inaccurate
especially : being or containing an error
an erroneous report
erroneously adverb
erroneousness noun

Legal Definition


er·​ro·​ne·​ous i-ˈrō-nē-əs, e- How to pronounce erroneous (audio)
: containing or characterized by error see also clearly erroneous
erroneously adverb
erroneousness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on erroneous

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