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

To right a wrong, on the eve of Christmas Eve 80 years ago, Carnegie Hall opened its august stage to a historic array of African-American musicians. John Edward Hasse, WSJ, "The Concert That Changed Music History," 24 Dec. 2018 Morrison said nothing could be done to right the wrongs inflicted on children. Trevor Marshallsea, Fox News, "PM formally apologizes to Australian child sex abuse victims," 22 Oct. 2018 That kind of atmosphere is seen in the Brasileirao every week, with Neymar and co. counting on vociferous support to right the wrongs of four years ago and claim an historic sixth title. SI.com, "9 of the Best Football Chants at the World Cup," 18 June 2018 Consul General Guillaume Lacroix said he was particularly moved by the commitment of families and staff and the school's history as a vehicle for righting a historic wrong. Annysa Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "At this MPS school, a mission of inclusion — and immersion in the French language — is vibrant after 40 years," 12 June 2018 He's settled political scores, helped political buddies, righted historical wrongs and doled out celebrity favors with clemencies. Z. Byron Wolf, CNN, "Trump's idea to pardon Muhammad Ali is weird and beside the point," 8 June 2018 Which is too bad, because the intentions behind the program were good: to right the wrongs of the war on drugs, which unfairly cracked down on black and brown people. Otis R. Taylor Jr., San Francisco Chronicle, "Oakland drags its feet in helping equity pot startups," 4 June 2018 In crafting the world of Unfair & Ugly, Khan and Chowdhry saw the opportunity to right two wrongs. Teresa Mathew, refinery29.com, "Unfair & Ugly: An American Family Sitcom About South Asian Muslims," 31 May 2018 Was the training a publicity stunt or a genuine effort on behalf of Starbucks to right its wrongs? Felice León, The Root, "Was the Starbucks Anti-Bias Training a Fail or Nah?," 29 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Experts don’t know why some people experience morning sickness and others don’t, but sailing through pregnancy without nausea and vomiting doesn’t automatically mean anything is wrong. Korin Miller, SELF, "Is It True That Morning Sickness Means Something Good During Pregnancy?," 10 Jan. 2019 And Fangs agrees, because honestly what could go wrong? Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Riverdale Just Came Dangerously Close to Killing Archie," 17 Jan. 2019 Danny and Maria work to track down want went wrong—and who's responsible for the tragedy. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Next Week's 'Blue Bloods' Episode Reveals That Frank Reagan Is Battling a Serious Lawsuit," 26 Oct. 2018 This just brings more questions: What’s wrong with Rebecca? Candice Frederick, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Is Us Just Dropped Two Massive Bombshells," 28 Nov. 2018 Some of them might get freaked out over some objects while others will be completely wrong with their guesses in this hilarious game. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "25 Fun Challenges to Play With Your Friends," 27 Nov. 2018 Believe it or not, there is a right and wrong way to condition your hair. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "Experts Explain How Conditioner Benefits Your Hair (and Why You Should Always Use It)," 16 Oct. 2018 Just as its characters have moved on from more trivial questions about what’s right or wrong in the post-apocalypse, so has the show. Nick Statt, The Verge, "The Walking Dead is finally tackling morality like it’s smarter than a comic book," 15 Oct. 2018 Do a full-body scan and identify what went right or wrong. Elizabeth Holmes, Marie Claire, "What Do I Do With My Hands In Photos? And Other Important Questions, Answered," 12 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Ideology can’t explain the election results Now, the fact that centrists are getting things wrong shouldn’t be taken as a sign that progressive candidates did great. Zack Beauchamp, Vox, "The strange argument that Democrats actually lost the midterms, debunked," 9 Nov. 2018 So close, in fact, that the ITV broadcast thought the referee got the decision wrong in disallowing Bolt’s second-half goal. Andrew Joseph, For The Win, "Usain Bolt got robbed of a goal during his 'professional' soccer debut," 10 June 2018 Getting that narrative wrong, however, is leading Washington toward policies to reduce the trade deficit that will be somewhere between irrelevant and counterproductive. Jason Furman, WSJ, "Worry About the Trade Deficit—a Bit," 1 May 2018 An appeals court said Bartle got the law wrong and ordered him to review the case. Craig R. Mccoy, Philly.com, "Federal judge gives go-ahead to lawsuit against former Attorney General Kane," 4 Apr. 2018 The awful things that had gone wrong in their families could be righted, fixed, altered with a basketball, a football, a baseball. David M. Shribman, WSJ, "‘Tigerland’ Review: Playing the Game Their Way," 18 Jan. 2019 Now in its fourth and final season, the series is finally making Rebecca confront all that has gone wrong in her life, while also putting her through the song-and-dance paces. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "The CW embraces musical comedy in this brilliant gem.," 20 Nov. 2018 Saudi Arabia and Egypt — for whom pretty much everything that could have gone wrong has gone wrong over the last two weeks — provided the gentlest of competition for Russia at the start of the tournament. Rory Smith, New York Times, "Finally, a Loss for Russia. But Only on the Field.," 25 June 2018 Investigators will now try to determine what exactly went wrong in this case. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "We Shouldn't Be Surprised About the C-130 Crash," 2 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Who hasn’t wanted to set the story straight when they’ve been wronged? Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Shopping While Black: Why I’m No Longer Afraid to Call Time on Racial Profiling," 29 Aug. 2018 But what's an army compared to exorcising your personal demons by exacting revenge on the people who wronged you? Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Preacher ends third season with a pop, not a bang," 28 Aug. 2018 Trump tried to dismiss the NFL players who protest as fame seekers because no one has given him a name of someone wronged by the justice system. Nancy Armour, USA TODAY, "This is how NFL players are responding to President Trump's rhetoric," 18 June 2018 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

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

4 Feb 2019

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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More from Merriam-Webster on wrong

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wrong

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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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