1

wrong

noun \ ˈrȯŋ \
Updated on: 19 Nov 2017

Definition of wrong

1 a :an injurious, unfair, or unjust act :action or conduct inflicting harm without due provocation or just cause
b :a violation or invasion of the legal rights of another; especially :tort
2 :something wrong, immoral, or unethical; especially :principles, practices, or conduct contrary to justice, goodness, equity, or law
3 :the state, position, or fact of being or doing wrong: such as
a :the state of being mistaken or incorrect
b :the state of being guilty

Examples of wrong in a Sentence

  1. any reasonable person should be expected to know the difference between right and wrong

  2. trying to right all the wrongs in the world

Recent Examples of wrong from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of wrong

Middle English, from Old English wrang, from *wrang, adjective, wrong

Synonym Discussion of wrong

injustice, injury, wrong, grievance mean an act that inflicts undeserved hurt. injustice applies to any act that involves unfairness to another or violation of one's rights.
    • the injustices suffered by the lower classes
injury applies in law specifically to an injustice for which one may sue to recover compensation.
    • libel constitutes a legal injury
wrong applies also in law to any act punishable according to the criminal code; it may apply more generally to any flagrant injustice.
    • determined to right society's wrongs
grievance applies to a circumstance or condition that constitutes an injustice to the sufferer and gives just ground for complaint.
    • a list of employee grievances

2

wrong

adjective

Definition of wrong

wronger play \ˈrȯŋ-ər\; wrongest play \ˈrȯŋ-əst\
1 :not according to the moral standard :sinful, immoral
  • thought that war was wrong
2 :not right or proper according to a code, standard, or convention :improper
  • it was wrong not to thank your host
3 :not according to truth or facts :incorrect
  • gave a wrong date
4 :not satisfactory (as in condition, results, health, or temper)
5 :not in accordance with one's needs, intent, or expectations
  • took the wrong bus
6 :of, relating to, or constituting the side of something that is usually held to be opposite to the principal one, that is the one naturally or by design turned down, inward, or away, or that is the least finished or polished

wrongly

play \ˈrȯŋ-lē\ adverb

wrongness

noun
wrong side of the tracks
:a run-down or unfashionable neighborhood

Examples of wrong in a Sentence

  1. I don't want you to get the wrong impression of him.

  2. Don't take this the wrong way, but I think you should start exercising.

  3. Are my actions sending the wrong message?

  4. These pages are in the wrong order.

  5. I got four answers wrong on the test.

  6. You're wrong; the answer is six.

  7. You like baseball, or am I wrong?

  8. Am I wrong in thinking that she should never have gone?

  9. I think her birthday is May 11th, but I could be wrong.

  10. He thinks I can't win, but I'm going to prove him wrong.

Recent Examples of wrong from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of wrong

Middle English, from Old English *wrang, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse rangr awry, wrong, Danish vrang wrong side; akin to Old English wringan to wring

wrong Synonyms

Synonyms
bastard, bush, bush-league, crummy (also crumby), deficient, dissatisfactory, ill, inferior, lame, lousy, off, paltry, poor, punk, sour, suboptimal, subpar, substandard, unacceptable, unsatisfactory, wack [slang], wanting, wretched, bad
Antonyms
acceptable, adequate, all right, decent, fine, OK (or okay), passable, respectable, satisfactory, standard, tolerable
Related Words
abysmal, atrocious, awful, bitchin' [slang], brutal, damnable, deplorable, detestable, disastrous, dreadful, execrable, gnarly [slang], horrendous, horrible, pathetic, stinky, sucky [slang], terrible, unspeakable; defective, faulty, flawed; egregious, flagrant, gross; bum, cheesy, coarse, common, crappy [slang], cut-rate, junky, lesser, low-grade, low-rent, mediocre, miserable, reprehensible, rotten, rubbishy, second-rate, shoddy, sleazy, trashy; abominable, odious, vile; useless, valueless, worthless; inadequate, insufficient, lacking, meager (or meagre), mean, miserly, niggardly, scanty, shabby, short, skimp, skimpy, spare, stingy; miscreant, scurrilous, villainous; counterfeit, fake, phony (also phoney), sham
Near Antonyms
classic, classical; A1, bang-up, banner, boss [slang], capital, choice, crackerjack, dandy, divine, excellent, exceptional, fabulous, fine, first-class, first-rate, grand, great, groovy, heavenly, high-test, jim-dandy, keen, marvelous (or marvellous), mean, neat, nifty, noble, par excellence, perfect, premium, prime, sensational, slick, splendid, stellar, sterling, superb, superior, superlative, supernal, swell, terrific, tip-top, top, top-notch, unsurpassed, wonderful; better, exceptional, fancy, high-grade, special, sufficient; average, borderline, fair, mediocre, middling, minimal, so-so, unexceptional; suitable, useful, worthy; gratifying, satisfying

3

wrong

adverb

Definition of wrong

1 :without accuracy :incorrectly
  • guessed wrong
2 :without regard for what is proper or just
  • was reprimanded for what he had done wrong
3 :in a wrong direction
  • turned wrong at the junction
4 a :in an unsuccessful or unfortunate way
  • something went wrong
b :out of working order or condition
5 :in a false light
  • don't get me wrong

Examples of wrong in a Sentence

  1. I entered the numbers wrong.

  2. Her name was spelled wrong on the form.

  3. I can't get this to work; could you show me what I did wrong?

Recent Examples of wrong from the Web

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

First Known Use of wrong

13th century


4

wrong

verb

Definition of wrong

wronged; wronging play \ˈrȯŋ-iŋ\
transitive verb
1 a :to do wrong to :injure, harm
b :to treat disrespectfully or dishonorably :violate
2 :defraud usually used with of
  • wronged them of their land

wronger

play \ˈrȯŋ-ər\ noun

Examples of wrong in a Sentence

  1. We should forgive those who have wronged us.

  2. As the wronged party, you have the right to sue for damages.

Recent Examples of wrong from the Web

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

First Known Use of wrong

14th century

Synonym Discussion of wrong

wrong, oppress, persecute, aggrieve mean to injure unjustly or outrageously. wrong implies inflicting injury either unmerited or out of proportion to what one deserves.
    • a penal system that had wronged him
oppress suggests inhumane imposing of burdens one cannot endure or exacting more than one can perform.
    • a people oppressed by a warmongering tyrant
persecute implies a relentless and unremitting subjection to annoyance or suffering.
    • a child persecuted by constant criticism
aggrieve implies suffering caused by an infringement or denial of rights.
    • a legal aid society representing aggrieved minority groups

WRONG Defined for English Language Learners

wrong

noun

Definition of wrong for English Language Learners

  • : behavior that is not morally good or correct

  • : a harmful, unfair, or illegal act


wrong

adjective

Definition of wrong for English Language Learners

  • : not agreeing with the facts or truth

  • : speaking, acting, or judging in a way that does not agree with the facts or truth

  • : not suitable or appropriate for a particular purpose, situation, or person


wrong

adverb

Definition of wrong for English Language Learners

  • : in a way that does not agree with the facts or truth : in a way that results in an error

  • : in a way that is not suitable, proper, etc.


wrong

verb

Definition of wrong for English Language Learners

  • : to treat (someone) badly or unfairly


WRONG Defined for Kids

1

wrong

adjective \ ˈrȯŋ \

Definition of wrong for Students

1 :not the one wanted or intended
  • I took the wrong train.
2 :not correct or true :false
  • Your addition is wrong.
3 :not right :sinful, evil
  • It is wrong to lie.
4 :not satisfactory :causing unhappiness
  • You're upset. What's wrong?
5 :not suitable
  • This coat is the wrong size.
6 :made so as to be placed down or under and not to be seen
  • the wrong side of cloth
7 :not proper
  • He swallowed something the wrong way.
8 :not working correctly
  • Something's wrong with the car.

wrongly

adverb

2

wrong

noun

Definition of wrong for Students

:something (as an idea, rule, or action) that is not right

3

wrong

adverb

Definition of wrong for Students

:in the wrong direction, manner, or way
  • I answered wrong.

4

wrong

verb

Definition of wrong for Students

wronged; wronging
:to treat badly or unfairly

Law Dictionary

1

wrong

noun

legal Definition of wrong

1 :a violation of the rights of another; especially :tort
2 :something (as conduct, practices, or qualities) contrary to justice, goodness, equity, or law
  • the difference between right and wrong

2

wrong

transitive verb

legal Definition of wrong

:to do a wrong to :treat with injustice


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