mis·​in·​ter·​pret | \ ˌmi-sᵊn-ˈtər-prət How to pronounce misinterpret (audio) , -pət \
misinterpreted; misinterpreting; misinterprets

Definition of misinterpret

transitive verb

1 : to explain wrongly His comment on the speech misinterprets the speaker's meaning.
2 : to understand wrongly Her silence should not be misinterpreted as consent.

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Examples of misinterpret in a Sentence

He claims that his statements have been misinterpreted by the media. Her silence should not be misinterpreted as consent.
Recent Examples on the Web These claims misstate and misinterpret the court's decision. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: Chauvin trial, federal election laws, sexual assault ruling," 1 Apr. 2021 Don’t misinterpret a lack of quantity, however, for quality. Pat Disabato, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Shepard ends a decadeslong drought against Richards, plus four more takeaways from Week 2 of the Southland football season.," 30 Mar. 2021 Wall Street and followers of GAAP accounting can easily misinterpret those firms as bad businesses, as Goldman’s new index does. Joel Litman, Forbes, "Wall Street Wrong Again: Goldman’s “Non-Profitable” Tech Index Is Not Vindicated By Volatility," 4 Mar. 2021 Do not misinterpret the somewhat doomsday appearing remarks as though self-driving cars aren’t going to make the cut. Lance Eliot, Forbes, "Massive Boon In Computer Chip Shortages Will Slam Future Self-Driving Car Rollouts," 2 Mar. 2021 Even some clinicians misinterpret the differences among the Covid-19 vaccines, health officials said. New York Times, "F.D.A. Clears Johnson & Johnson’s Shot, the Third Vaccine for U.S.," 27 Feb. 2021 Observers can be expected to overreact and misinterpret the combination of moves, which are largely unrelated. Michael Lynch, Forbes, "Exxon’s Massive, Earth-Shattering Reserve Decline Is A Non-Event," 25 Feb. 2021 Regardless of how — and why — others are now choosing to misinterpret the past, that is the truth. Nick Romano, EW.com, "Marilyn Manson under investigation in Los Angeles over abuse claims," 19 Feb. 2021 In our experience, the Halo could detect ups and downs in our voice, but seemed to misinterpret situations regularly. Washington Post, "Amazon’s new health band is the most invasive tech we’ve ever tested," 10 Dec. 2020

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

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First Known Use of misinterpret

1547, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for misinterpret

Time Traveler

The first known use of misinterpret was in 1547

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Statistics for misinterpret

Last Updated

10 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Misinterpret.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misinterpret. Accessed 14 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for misinterpret



English Language Learners Definition of misinterpret

: to understand or explain (something) incorrectly : to interpret (something) incorrectly

More from Merriam-Webster on misinterpret

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for misinterpret

Nglish: Translation of misinterpret for Spanish Speakers

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