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 of wronged 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

The Premier League's chief of referees Mike Riley has admitted to four decisions that VAR has got wrong so far this season, promising that officials will learn from their mistakes and make better use of the technology after the international break. SI.com, "VAR: PGMOL Chief Mike Riley Admits Four Mistakes Have Been Made So Far This Season," 13 Sep. 2019 Everything touches cyber nowadays—this idea of cybersecurity and cyber hygiene and cyber ethics, making sure people understand right from wrong in the cyber world. Sue Halpern, The New Yorker, "A Summer Camp for the Next Generation of N.S.A. Agents," 15 Aug. 2019 But the college kids who eat up their potential allies aren’t exactly contributing to social justice, either, and Klein goes significantly wrong in claiming that the campus problem is mostly a figment of the imagination. Sahil Handa, National Review, "What Conservatives Get Wrong about the Campus Wars," 4 July 2019 Initial estimates offered by the Legislature aren't adding up for many districts, and getting the financial math wrong — and spending too freely — could be catastrophic. Corbett Smith, Dallas News, "Texas is spending billions more on education, but teachers may not get the raises they expect," 30 June 2019 Since the rich command a disproportionately large share of overall income, getting them wrong is a disproportionately big problem. The Economist, "A rare peep at the finances of Britain’s 0.01%," 29 June 2019 Professor Fiss of course holds that Justice Scalia and the other judicial conservatives got this wrong. Noah Feldman, The New York Review of Books, "Arguing Affirmative Action," 7 Feb. 2019 Something has clearly gone wrong when parents are prepared to risk not just their own integrity but also their kids’, as well as their freedom. Ned Johnson, Washington Post, "College admissions scandal: Even if you could give your kid everything, should you?," 17 Sep. 2019 The 26-year-old would take great pleasure in proving everyone in England wrong, especially Solskjaer. SI.com, "Analysing How Successful 10 Former Premier League Players Will Be After Moving to Serie A," 15 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Free Press writers Chris Solari and Shawn Windsor and LSJ's Graham Couch dissect what went wrong in MSU's 10-7 loss to Arizona State, Sept. 14, 2019. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "Mark Dantonio blamed refs for Michigan State football's loss. He should blame himself," 15 Sep. 2019 Fitzpatrick, meanwhile, went from being a cornerstone of the rebuilding Dolphins to an example of everything that can go wrong in a season like this. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: And now here come the Patriots — what (more) could go wrong for Dolphins? | Commentary," 14 Sep. 2019 There’s a lot less that seems to be able to go wrong with the small screen and squishy little keyboards of the iPad. Mike Murphy, Quartz, "You probably don’t need to buy a MacBook anymore," 11 Sep. 2019 In Minority Report, Spielberg asked theatergoers to think about how technology could be both used and abused—to eliminate crimes before they could be committed, as well as to abuse people’s rights when things go wrong. Wired, "Do Our Faces Deserve the Same Protection as Our Phones?," 10 Sep. 2019 Plenty went wrong for UC's defense, and perhaps the most troubling takeaway from Fickell's postgame presser was his statement that the group played cautious. Fletcher Page, Cincinnati.com, "What we learned in Cincinnati Bearcats' loss at Ohio State," 8 Sep. 2019 What went wrong with the landing module is anybody’s guess—such is the nature of a communications breakdown. The Economist, "Bangalore, we have a problem," 7 Sep. 2019 Even so, soft landings south of Chang’e-4 hadn’t been attempted before Chandrayaan-2, crewed or uncrewed—and as recent missions underscore, a lot can go wrong on the way to the surface. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "India’s first lunar lander falls silent just before touchdown," 6 Sep. 2019 As southwest India finally has some respite from the recent heavy rains, the discussions have now turned to what went wrong. Nandita Jayaraj, Quartz India, "The coffee plantations of India’s western ghats are being wrongly blamed for climate change," 4 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The 14-year-old texted his big sister on the first day at Reidsville Senior High about all the things that had gone wrong. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "After story about freshman's terrible first day of school goes viral, upperclassmen befriend him at lunch," 3 Sep. 2019 Iran’s attempts to build a functioning space program are controversial because there are overlaps between space-launch and missile technology; this is the second time this year an attempt to place a satellite in orbit has gone wrong. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, "What we can learn from the spy satellite image Trump tweeted," 31 Aug. 2019 Without any real answers, close friends and strangers alike parsed the awful details, trying to figure out what had gone wrong. Zoe Greenberg, BostonGlobe.com, "‘We don’t know the answer’: A community is stunned after BU student is killed," 31 Aug. 2019 If the Tigers aren’t 7-0 heading to Kentucky in late October, something has gone wrong. 14. Jon Wilner, The Denver Post, "The Pac-12 Hotline’s AP preseason football ballot: Who’s No. 3?," 12 Aug. 2019 Woodstock was an experiment that, as everyone there seemed to realize, could go wrong at any moment and, by sheer luck, didn’t. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "Woodstock’s Contradictions, 50 Years Later," 5 Aug. 2019 The 35-year-old Deputy Brigadier of the Carabinieri, Italy’s military police, was stabbed to death early Friday, a consequence of a drug deal gone wrong. Fox News, "Italian police officer allegedly killed by American teens remembered as hero," 30 July 2019 Here’s how the developer explains it: Sigma is a kind and brilliant scientist who has been irreparably changed by an experiment gone wrong, gaining the ability to manipulate gravity in the process. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "Overwatch’s next hero is Sigma, a scientist who controls gravity," 23 July 2019 Whether you're drawn to the retro teal model, the fun red version or the sleek white option, there's no going wrong. Noelle Ike, CNN Underscored, "Today only, take $40 off new colors for the fan favorite Instant Pot," 2 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

And the change will certainly inspire outrage at some point this season, as fans, and likely coaches, point to contact shown in slow-motion as evidence that their team was wronged. Tom Schad, USA TODAY, "As new season begins, NFL coaches still trying to sort out pass interference rule changes," 5 Sep. 2019 The best part of working for The Times is righting wrongs — helping people that were wronged by others, businesses or the government. Greg Gilbert, The Seattle Times, "In 52 years at The Seattle Times, photographer Greg Gilbert has seen it all. But he wants to see more.," 31 July 2019 Likewise, James Winkler is well-suited to play Victor, Amanda’s new husband, who like Sybil is clearly wronged in this situation. Pomerado News, "REVIEW: PowPAC’s ‘Private Lives’ is full of comedy and action," 21 Aug. 2019 Simone may truly want to hurt her husband (by downgrading his living conditions), but the show suggests she’s worth rooting for not just because she’s been wronged, but also because her vulnerability gives her dimension. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "The Cheap Thrills of The Kitchen and Why Women Kill," 19 Aug. 2019 Attorneys for the Alaska plaintiffs say the resolution of the Dartmouth case gives credence to their clients and any others who have been wronged. Author: Rachel D'oro, Anchorage Daily News, "Former UAA professor accused of sexual misconduct objects to pseudonyms in lawsuit," 13 Aug. 2019 While the first and second seasons showed in minute detail all the people who wronged Hannah before her death, Bryce is the person who raped her and then gaslit her as if the assault was consensual (and continued to do so even after her death). Sydney Bucksbaum, EW.com, "13 Reasons Why killing off Bryce Walker is actually the best move for the controversial show," 1 Aug. 2019 Rapinoe and all public figures should take their fight to those who wronged them, not to those who gave them that right. Dp Opinion, The Denver Post, "Letters: Politics intrudes in sports; Epstein, Trump and Clinton; July 4 coverage was objective; Make colleges pay for bad debt (7/9/19)," 9 July 2019 Lewandowski is now trying to fight back, claiming he's been wronged by the media. Aaron Blake, Washington Post, "Corey Lewandowski’s predictably idiotic Down-syndrome gaffe," 20 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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Dictionary Entries near wrong

WRO

wrocht

Wrocław

wrong

wrong'un

wrongdoer

wrongdoing

Statistics for wrong

Last Updated

14 Oct 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 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

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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