transgress

verb
trans·​gress | \ tran(t)s-ˈgres How to pronounce transgress (audio) , tranz- \
transgressed; transgressing; transgresses

Definition of transgress

intransitive verb

1 : to violate a command or law : sin
2 : to go beyond a boundary or limit

transitive verb

1 : to go beyond limits set or prescribed by : violate transgress divine law
2 : to pass beyond or go over (a limit or boundary)

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Other Words from transgress

transgressive \ tran(t)s-​ˈgre-​siv How to pronounce transgressive (audio) , tranz-​ \ adjective
transgressor \ tran(t)s-​ˈgre-​sər How to pronounce transgressor (audio) , tranz-​ \ noun

Synonyms for transgress

Synonyms

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Examples of transgress in a Sentence

He who transgresses must seek forgiveness. There are legal consequences for companies that transgress the rules.
Recent Examples on the Web Anyone who transgresses that norm by refusing to follow traditional gender stereotypes is viewed askance and, in small and large ways, treated as an outcast. Max De Haldevang, Quartz, "To be a better ally, I gave up reading books by men for 2019," 27 Dec. 2019 Yet, unlike other norms Trump has transgressed, this is one many progressive Trump critics apparently want Democrats to join the president in dismantling. The Washington Post, Twin Cities, "Other voices: Progressives jump on this Trump train?," 20 Oct. 2019 Notably, the person must be aware of having transgressed a norm. Annette Kämmerer, Scientific American, "The Scientific Underpinnings and Impacts of Shame," 9 Aug. 2019 In India, transgressing such boundaries sometimes provokes violence. Joanna Slater, Washington Post, "A young Indian couple married for love. Then the bride’s father hired assassins.," 19 Aug. 2019 If Mr Lovejoy and Mr Nobre are right, that could be disastrous—once the tipping-point is transgressed, much of the rest of the forest could follow in just a matter of decades. The Economist, "The Amazon is approaching an irreversible tipping point," 1 Aug. 2019 Recognizing that times were changing, Mrs. Kozlova, however, dared to transgress it. Djurdja Bartlett, Smithsonian, "When the United States and Soviet Union Fought It Out Over Fashion," 4 June 2019 But the word still pinpoints that which transgresses human decency. New York Times, "News of an ‘Outrage’ Used to Mean Something Very, Very Different," 23 May 2018 Cohler: Which raises the question of to what extent him transgressing these boundaries is deliberate or not. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "What Classical Music Can Learn From Kanye West," 2 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for transgress

Middle English, from Middle French transgresser, from Latin transgressus, past participle of transgredi to step beyond or across, from trans- + gradi to step — more at grade entry 1

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Time Traveler for transgress

Time Traveler

The first known use of transgress was in the 15th century

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Statistics for transgress

Last Updated

27 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Transgress.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/transgress. Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for transgress

transgress

verb
How to pronounce transgress (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of transgress

formal : to do something that is not allowed : to disobey a command or law

transgress

transitive verb
trans·​gress | \ tranz-ˈgres, trans- How to pronounce transgress (audio) \

Legal Definition of transgress

1 : to go beyond limits set or prescribed by : violate
2 : to pass beyond or go over (a limit or boundary)

intransitive verb

1 : to violate a law
2 : to go beyond a boundary or limit

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Comments on transgress

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