mis·​iden·​ti·​fi·​ca·​tion ˌmis-ī-ˌden-tə-fə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce misidentification (audio)
plural misidentifications
: incorrect or false identification
The long-term nature of a life insurance policy sometimes accounts for a misidentification of the insured.Harriett E. Jones et al.
In the finished novel, the central character insists on calling his girlfriend June, though her name is Joan—one of many obsessional misidentifications in [Henry] Green's fiction.Jeremy Treglown

Examples of misidentification in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The group says eyewitness misidentification is the leading contributing factor of wrongful convictions and has contributed to 64% of the Innocence Project's 245 exonerations and releases. CBS News, 11 Oct. 2023 Enlarge / Black bears will frequently stand on their hind legs, which may increase their misidentification. Benj Edwards, Ars Technica, 19 Jan. 2024 In homage to the misidentification as plants, the team has given the fossils a unique nickname. Margherita Bassi, Smithsonian Magazine, 8 Dec. 2023 The Innocence Project said eyewitness misidentification has contributed to 64% of their 245 exonerations and releases. Cara Tabachnick, CBS News, 5 Sep. 2023 Unfortunately, the misidentification of other spiders as brown recluses leads to a false perception of their widespread presence, creating an exaggerated sense of risk. Anna Nordseth, Discover Magazine, 27 July 2023 Reid was in jail for six days and his family spent thousands of dollars in legal fees before learning about the misidentification, which had resulted from a search done by a police department under contract with Clearview AI. Eyal Press, The New Yorker, 13 Nov. 2023 The most common causes of wrongful convictions are eyewitness misidentification, misapplication of forensic science, false confessions, coerced pleas and official misconduct, generally by police or prosecutors, according to the Innocence Project, a national organization based in New York. Sean Murphy, Fortune, 12 Oct. 2023 Officials believe many of the reports are a result of equipment error, misidentification, or misperception. Aliza Chasan, CBS News, 19 Oct. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1860, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of misidentification was in 1860

Dictionary Entries Near misidentification

Cite this Entry

“Misidentification.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misidentification. Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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