Definition of turpitude
: inherent baseness : depravity moral turpitude; also : a base act
turpitude was our Word of the Day on 07/06/2008. Hear the podcast!
Examples of turpitude in a sentence
pictorial advertisements for chic clothing and fragrances in which drug addiction and other forms of moral turpitude are depicted as alternative fashion statements
Did You Know?
Turpitude came to English from Latin by way of Middle French. The Latin word turpitudo comes from "turpis," which means "vile" or "base." The word is often heard in the phrase "moral turpitude," an expression used in law to designate an act or behavior that gravely violates the sentiment or accepted standard of the community. A criminal offense that involves "moral turpitude" is considered wrong or evil by moral standards, in addition to being the violation of a statute.
Origin and Etymology of turpitude
Medieval French, from Latin turpitudo, from turpis vile, base
First Known Use: 15th century
TURPITUDE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of turpitude for English Language Learners
: a very evil quality or way of behaving
Legal Definition of turpitude
: inherent baseness or depravity; also : a base act
Seen and Heard
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