Definition of offend
1a : to transgress (see transgress transitive 1) the moral or divine law : sin if it be a sin to covet honor, I am the most offending soul alive — William Shakespeareb : to violate a law or rule : do wrong offend against the law
2a : to cause difficulty, discomfort, or injury took off his shoe and removed the offending pebbleb : to cause dislike, anger, or vexation thoughtless words that offend needlessly
2 obsolete : to cause to sin or fall
3 : to cause (a person or group) to feel hurt, angry, or upset by something said or done was offended by their language She carefully worded her comments so as not to offend anyone.
Examples of offend in a Sentence
His comments about minority groups offended many of us.
She had carefully worded her comments so as not to offend anyone.
It offends me that you would make such a remark.
Don't worry. I wasn't offended.
I felt a little offended by their lack of respect.
Some people are offended by the song's lyrics.
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to offend you.
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to offend.
Synonym Discussion of offend
OFFEND Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of offend for English Language Learners
: to cause (a person or group) to feel hurt, angry, or upset by something said or done
: to be unpleasant to (someone or something)
: to do wrong : to be against what people believe is acceptable or proper
OFFEND Defined for Kids
Definition of offend for Students
1 : to hurt the feelings of or insult She uses language that offends people.
2 : to do wrong Is the released prisoner likely to offend again?
Legal Definition of offend
: to commit an offense
Seen and Heard
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