wrong

noun
\ ˈrȯŋ \

Definition of wrong 

(Entry 1 of 4)

1a : 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

wrong

adjective
wronger\ˈrȯŋ-ər \; wrongest\ˈrȯŋ-əst \

Definition of wrong (Entry 2 of 4)

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

wrong side of the tracks

: a run-down or unfashionable neighborhood

wrong

adverb

Definition of wrong (Entry 3 of 4)

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

4a : 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

wrong

verb
wronged; wronging\ˈrȯŋ-iŋ \

Definition of wrong (Entry 4 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : to do wrong to : injure, harm

b : to treat disrespectfully or dishonorably : violate

2 : defraud usually used with of wronged them of their land

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Other words from wrong

Adjective

wrongly \ˈrȯŋ-lē \ adverb
wrongness noun

Verb

wronger \ˈrȯŋ-ər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for wrong

Noun

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

Verb

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

Examples of wrong in a Sentence

Noun

any reasonable person should be expected to know the difference between right and wrong trying to right all the wrongs in the world

Adjective

I don't want you to get the wrong impression of him. Don't take this the wrong way, but I think you should start exercising. Are my actions sending the wrong message? These pages are in the wrong order. I got four answers wrong on the test. You're wrong; the answer is six. You like baseball, or am I wrong? Am I wrong in thinking that she should never have gone? I think her birthday is May 11th, but I could be wrong. He thinks I can't win, but I'm going to prove him wrong.

Adverb

I entered the numbers wrong. Her name was spelled wrong on the form. I can't get this to work; could you show me what I did wrong?

Verb

We should forgive those who have wronged us. As the wronged party, you have the right to sue for damages.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The writer-director's latest, Skyscraper, stars his Central Intelligence collaborator Dwayne Johnson as former FBI agent and war veteran Will Sawyer, who lost part of his leg after a hostage situation gone wrong. Aaron Couch, The Hollywood Reporter, "Why 'Skyscraper' Director Will Never Make a Sequel to His Cult Classic 'Dodgeball'," 13 July 2018 Initially, there was some speculation whether Ekkapol, the 25-year-old coach who took the boys into Tham Luang Cave, might be criminally culpable for overseeing a trip gone wrong. Hannah Beech, The Seattle Times, "For some Thai soccer-team members, cave ordeal was only their latest test," 10 July 2018 Companies have been among the most outspoken critics of the split from the European Union, and have much to lose from a divorce gone wrong. Emma Ross-thomas, Bloomberg.com, "Brexit Bulletin: Second Referendum? Business Says No," 17 Apr. 2018 Barnes' letter, obtained by the Star-Telegram, was made available in conjunction with a note that Baylor authored last summer saying Briles was not in the wrong. Mac Engel, star-telegram, "This letter from an ex-Baylor coach exonerates former football coach Art Briles," 29 June 2018 But despite the Dragon Tattoo books’ focus on Salander’s journey to seize self-determination, she is often constrained by the narrative’s own gaze, even when it is mediated through characters who will end up in the wrong. Alice Bolin, Longreads, "The Daughter as Detective," 26 June 2018 One day after the December repeal vote, Pai argued on Fox News that net neutrality supporters had been proven wrong by the fact that ISPs didn't start blocking and throttling websites immediately after the vote. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "Net neutrality to die on June 11, as Ajit Pai blasts “special interests”," 10 May 2018 What does conventional wisdom get wrong about the suffrage movement? Anna Diamond, Smithsonian, "How Tennessee Became the Final Battleground in the Fight for Suffrage," 20 Mar. 2018 Somehow, still, after all of this, fans of the thread remained adamant that no wrong had been committed. Taylor Lorenz, The Atlantic, "Unidentified Plane Bae Woman's Statement Confirms the Worst," 13 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

From the very beginning of this disastrous season, the Orioles were a chemistry experiment gone horribly wrong. Peter Schmuck, baltimoresun.com, "Schmuck: During season on the brink, Orioles are losing the head games, too," 14 July 2018 Add Build-a-Bear to the list of companies whose great idea for a promotion went horribly wrong. Brett Molina, USA TODAY, "Build-a-Bear blunder: Other company promotions that epically failed," 13 July 2018 Big banks are performing well right now, but investors are fixated on what could go wrong in the future. Aaron Back, WSJ, "Investors Are Ignoring the Good News in Banks," 13 July 2018 Much of the work in the next few weeks involves aspects of the building that might never be noticed — unless something goes wrong. Peter Dobrin, Philly.com, "Academy of Music is replacing its lumpy old seats - and, no, you're not getting cup holders," 12 July 2018 More: Film review: What went wrong for Louisville’s defense against Boston College? Jake Lourim, The Courier-Journal, "How Louisville football can (and can't) beat Boston College," 8 July 2018 This latter group believes that the court went deeply wrong sometime in the 1960s or before, issuing scores of rulings that in their eyes are liberal and activist. latimes.com, "How Trump could do the least damage with his Supreme Court pick," 7 July 2018 What went wrong for the successful private-equity investor, who ran for the first time for office in 2014 and managed to win the gubernatorial election by four percentage points in a Democratic state? The Economist, "Bruce Rauner discovers bipartisanship," 5 July 2018 None of the foundations that donated money to Brown would discuss what went wrong at the school. Daniel Duane, WIRED, "How the Startup Mentality Failed Kids in San Francisco," 28 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The Supreme Court has been wrong on major decisions before, and the Roberts court has joined that sad legacy. Dawud Walid, The Root, "Muslim Travel Ban? There Has Never Been an America Without Islam or Muslims," 27 June 2018 Nik Stauskas was a Canadian prep schooler whose name was constantly spelled wrong on recruiting profiles. Nick Baumgardner, Detroit Free Press, "John Beilein's system big winner in Michigan basketball's NCAA run," 4 Apr. 2018 That would have been, that would have been—for he and I to have spoken ahead of that 10 o’clock—would have been wrong at every level. Cam Simpson, Bloomberg.com, "Brexit’s Big Short: How Pollsters Helped Hedge Funds Beat the Crash," 25 June 2018 Reverie, developed by 2016 Mars miniseries creator Mickey Fisher, is all about cases of technology gone wrong. Adi Robertson, The Verge, "NBC’s new VR thriller Reverie is a schmaltzy take on techno-dystopia," 30 May 2018 Hoskins has nine hits in 25 at-bats with three homers since returning from the DL, offering Kapler an indication that something may have been wrong. Matt Breen, Philly.com, "A refreshed Rhys Hoskins is finding success again after returning to Phillies lineup," 16 June 2018 The two also post a picture of a dessert that says: Congratulations Scott and Sofia (except Sofia is spelled wrong, lol). Alison Caporimo, Seventeen, "Here's a Complete Timeline of Scott Disick and Sofia Richie's Relationship," 5 June 2018 Charlotte’s Wedding to Harry Goldenblatt For Charlotte’s second wedding (to her divorce lawyer!), everything that could go wrong did. Colleen Kratofil, PEOPLE.com, "Sex and the City Turns 20: Look Back at Every Wedding Dress the Girls Wore," 5 June 2018 Popovich said Anderson did nothing wrong, adding the team needed Gay’s scoring. Jabari Young, San Antonio Express-News, "For Kyle Anderson, postseason struggles ‘getting to me that I can’t help my team’," 18 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Yet the fact that hundreds of civilians filed complaints, including against ISIS fighters who had wronged them, suggests that at least some Iraqis believed the terrorist group would do right by them. Rukmini Callimachi, New York Times, "The Case of the Purloined Poultry: How ISIS Prosecuted Petty Crime," 1 July 2018 The report also alleges a long series of misjudgments that Democrats will likely use to support their belief that Clinton was wronged by the FBI. BostonGlobe.com, "Here’s what Hillary Clinton had to say about her e-mails and the IG report on the FBI," 14 June 2018 Nor is there any way of knowing today which paragraph is right and who is wronged. Dave Hyde, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Hyde: A Panthers trade, an added scorer — and a lurid story to sort out | Commentary," 19 June 2018 Hancock is one of several players who is suing the NCAA and is tired of answering the question about prostitutes nearly every day Louisville Courier Journal Luke Hancock has been wronged. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Ex-Card Luke Hancock sympathetic, but law seems to be on NCAA's side," 11 July 2018 To see this woman—this nearly unassailable force of nature—be wronged so deeply was jarring, a vicarious blow that caused visceral pain for countless fans. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "Do Beyoncé Fans Have to Forgive Jay-Z?," 18 June 2018 There isn't even a real villain—just people who have wronged one another in some way and are trying to Work Through It. Joshua Rivera, GQ, "Ant-Man and the Wasp," 5 July 2018 The report alleges a long series of misjudgments that Democrats will likely use to support their belief that Clinton was wronged by the FBI. Eric Tucker And Chad Day, The Christian Science Monitor, "Watchdog says Comey was 'insubordinate' but not biased with Clinton probe," 14 June 2018 In September and December of 2017, the former Grapevine resident claimed that the NFL had wronged Elliott by its handling of his domestic violence case. Peter Dawson, star-telegram, "Why was Dak Prescott visited by Post Malone at Cowboys minicamp?," 13 June 2018

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.

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First Known Use of wrong

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adverb

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for wrong

Noun

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

Adjective

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

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Learn More about wrong

Dictionary Entries near wrong

WRO

wrocht

Wrocław

wrong

wrong'un

wrongdoer

wrongdoing

Statistics for wrong

Last Updated

16 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for wrong

The first known use of wrong was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for wrong

wrong

noun

English Language Learners Definition of wrong

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: behavior that is not morally good or correct

: a harmful, unfair, or illegal act

wrong

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of wrong (Entry 2 of 4)

: 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

English Language Learners Definition of wrong (Entry 3 of 4)

: 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

English Language Learners Definition of wrong (Entry 4 of 4)

: to treat (someone) badly or unfairly

wrong

adjective
\ ˈrȯŋ \

Kids Definition of wrong

 (Entry 1 of 4)

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.

Other words from wrong

wrongly adverb

wrong

noun

Kids Definition of wrong (Entry 2 of 4)

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

wrong

adverb

Kids Definition of wrong (Entry 3 of 4)

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

wrong

verb
wronged; wronging

Kids Definition of wrong (Entry 4 of 4)

: to treat badly or unfairly

wrong

noun

Legal Definition of wrong 

(Entry 1 of 2)

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

Legal Definition of wrong (Entry 2 of 2)

: to do a wrong to : treat with injustice

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Comments on wrong

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