wrong

noun
\ ˈrȯŋ How to pronounce wrong (audio) \

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 How to pronounce wronger (audio) \; wrongest\ ˈrȯŋ-​əst How to pronounce wrongest (audio) \

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 How to pronounce wronging (audio) \

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 ofwronged them of their land

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Other Words from wrong

Adjective

wrongly \ ˈrȯŋ-​lē How to pronounce wrongly (audio) \ adverb
wrongness noun

Verb

wronger \ ˈrȯŋ-​ər How to pronounce wronger (audio) \ 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 But Mila Jam is singing about much more than a relationship gone wrong. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "25 Songs From LGBTQ Artists You May Have Missed In 2019," 19 Dec. 2019 But what if a payout isn’t the point, and the best remedy is for the company to right the wrong? Marc Bain, Quartz at Work, "What can we do when supposedly ethical companies break their promises?," 16 Dec. 2019 Queen & Slim stars Daniel Kaluuya and Jodie Turner-Smith as a couple on their first date who are forced to go on the run after a traffic stop gone wrong. Pamela Mcclintock, The Hollywood Reporter, "Box Office: 'Frozen 2' Tops Black Friday With $34M; 'Knives Out' Strong No. 2," 30 Nov. 2019 When children die from abuse or neglect after recently being called to child welfare workers’ attention, their deaths trigger an intensive review process and public reports to find out what may have gone wrong. oregonlive, "Foster care supervisor who drew criticism, lawsuits continues long career at DHS after internal investigation," 30 Nov. 2019 One dramatic example of the influencer geotagging effect gone wrong was seen in March in Lake Elsinore, California, where a few Instagrammers with massive followings posed among the town’s poppy super bloom. Tyler Moss, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Geotagging Debate Is Really About Gatekeeping in the Outdoors," 18 Nov. 2019 Red Wings look awful: What has gone wrong, and who bears blame? Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Red Wings destroyed, Jimmy Howard pulled in soft 2nd period of 6-1 loss," 5 Nov. 2019 Everything that could have gone wrong last week did. Ryan Dodson, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Notre Dame-Virginia Tech odds: Irish expected to win big?," 1 Nov. 2019 My mind was an overcrowded psychedelic party gone wrong. Nell Zink, Harper's magazine, "The Bird Angle," 28 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The decade of college basketball started with Duke outlasting Butler in an epic national title game and ended with Virginia earning redemption after being on the wrong side of history the year before. Cincinnati.com, "Kentucky’s 2012 college basketball team voted best of decade," 1 Jan. 2020 The party is on the wrong side of demographic change. Dp Opinion, The Denver Post, "Letters: RTD service issues unacceptable; Caldara’s Christmas gift advice is locked and loaded (12/29/19)," 29 Dec. 2019 For one half of the series, Madhav’s Moosa is a sympathetic character, coincidentally on the wrong side of the law. Devarsi Ghosh, Quartz India, "From India’s numerous web originals of 2019, these 10 characters stand out," 26 Dec. 2019 Robinson screamed so loud, her daughter came rushing from her bedroom to see what was wrong. Wendi C. Thomas, ProPublica, "What It Looks Like When a Hospital We Investigated Erases $11.9 Million in Medical Debt," 24 Dec. 2019 At one point during the chase, the suspect allegedly tried to hit a patrol vehicle and was driving on the wrong side of the road. Howard Koplowitz | Hkoplowitz@al.com, al, "Man allegedly stole east Alabama fire chief’s official vehicle while chief was on call," 14 Dec. 2019 If that happened, they could be passed by the Patriots or end up on the wrong side of the head-to-head tiebreaker with the Chiefs, but there are 31 teams in the NFL who would gladly trade places with them right now. Peter Schmuck, baltimoresun.com, "The five games in Week 14 that mattered to Ravens: AFC playoff picture coming into focus," 9 Dec. 2019 Knowles is facing the following charges: committing a felony with a weapon, eluding an officer, disobeying a red flashing signal, driving on the wrong side of the road and an improper left turn. Susannah Bryan, sun-sentinel.com, "Hallandale officer fired 12 rounds at man who ran red light at start of chase," 9 Dec. 2019 However, according to a few of Kate Beckinsale’s Instagram followers, 46 is definitely on the wrong side of the line. Claire Gillespie, Health.com, "Kate Beckinsale Hits Back at Trolls Who Say She’s Too Old to Post Bikini Pics," 4 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Things began to go wrong, however, when the Buckeyes reached first-and-10 at the Tigers 11. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Early red zone chances haunted Ohio State football late in Fiesta Bowl loss to Clemson: Buckeye Rewatch," 30 Dec. 2019 Elizabeth Frantz for The New York Times As a health care professional, Dr. Erika Rangel is trained to know when things are going wrong. New York Times, "When the Surgeon Is a Mom," 20 Dec. 2019 Ireland has insisted on a backstop as an insurance policy against things going wrong, making this is a crucial gap, and one government officials briefing on the plan were unable to fill. Robert Hutton, Bloomberg.com, "EU Says Johnson Proposal Has ‘Problematic Points’: Brexit Update," 2 Oct. 2019 The solar system is littered with the wreckage of past lander missions gone wrong. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Amateur Astronomer Locates India’s Moon Lander Crash Site," 5 Dec. 2019 Dig into the exclusive clip above to see technology go wrong as Homer flirts with an Alexa form of Marge. Dan Snierson, EW.com, "Simpsons producer drops 10 hints about 'Thanksgiving of Horror' trilogy episode," 22 Nov. 2019 Police believe the incident was a drug deal gone wrong. Elizabeth Wolfe And Christina Walker, CNN, "In 46 weeks this year, there have been 45 school shootings," 19 Nov. 2019 But the idea that vast personal fortunes are made possible only when government goes wrong is a more novel and serious idea. The Economist, "Billionaires are only rarely policy failures," 9 Nov. 2019 Consumer sentiment still is strong but the nagging feeling that something could go wrong is picking up. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, "When you know low mortgage rates won't be enough to sell your home," 25 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The fact that Democrats have more ground for complaint is at once provable and practicably immaterial, given how equally wronged both sides feel. The Economist, "Fahrenheit Wisconsin," 18 Dec. 2019 The Sun was once a planet A lot of people seem to feel that scientists wronged Pluto by changing its classification. Christopher Palma, The Conversation, "Planetary confusion – why astronomers keep changing what it means to be a planet," 16 Dec. 2019 ExxonMobil’s communications on climate change had neither the intent nor the effect of wronging the company’s investors. Walter Olson, National Review, "The Hashtag Prosecution against Exxon," 16 Dec. 2019 Most of the attackers in the study had a grievance, described as a real or perceived sense of injustice or of being wronged. Mark Berman, Washington Post, "FBI says ‘lone offender terrorism’ in U.S. follows histories of violence, concerning behaviors," 13 Nov. 2019 As this brings home, when one adult grievously wrongs another, the consequences are unpredictable. B.c., The Economist, "Two new films explore the limits of Christian forgiveness," 13 Nov. 2019 The same show that scattered logic to the wind and wronged its female characters in a hurried final season, which delivered an anticlimactic head-scratcher of an ending (Bran???) that didn’t satisfy anyone? Los Angeles Times, "Emmy predictions: Who will, should and could win at Sunday night’s awards," 19 Sep. 2019 Soprano Eleni Calenos was an inspired choice, with her rich tone and exquisite control, shifting easily from timid introvert to passionate (and deeply wronged) lover. cleveland.com, "Cleveland Opera Theater kicks off season with ingenious, talent-rich ‘La Boheme’," 16 Sep. 2019 There were people around, Taylor thought, people to hear about how she’d been wronged. Jason Pohl, ProPublica, "A Jail Increased Extreme Isolation to Stop Suicides. More People Killed Themselves.," 5 Nov. 2019

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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Time Traveler for wrong

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for wrong

Last Updated

7 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Wrong.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wronger. Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for wrong

wrong

noun
How to pronounce wrong (audio)

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 How to pronounce wrong (audio) \

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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More from Merriam-Webster on wrong

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wrong

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wrong

Spanish Central: Translation of wrong

Nglish: Translation of wrong for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wrong for Arabic Speakers

Comments on wrong

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