- to irritate, annoy, or anger; cause resentful displeasure in: Even the hint of prejudice offends me.
- to affect (the sense, taste, etc.) disagreeably.
- to violate or transgress (a criminal, religious, or moral law).
- to hurt or cause pain to.
- (in Biblical use) to cause to fall into sinful ways.
- to cause resentful displeasure; irritate, annoy, or anger: a remark so thoughtless it can only offend.
- to err in conduct; commit a sin, crime, or fault.
Origin of offend
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for offend
And could the word "Russkiy," or 'Russian', offend ethnically non-Russian citizens around the country?Rebranding The Land of Mongol Warriors & Ivan The Terrible
December 25, 2014
Worried this might turn people off from his performance, Khan said he didn't intend to offend anyone.Defying Stereotypes, Young Muslim Writers Find Community Onstage
October 12, 2014
But Alex Rubin cannot afford to offend any of the media willing to cover safely dead dissidents.From Moscow to Queens, Down Sergei Dovlatov Way
September 15, 2014
“This show is not an exercise to offend people,” McGruder countered.‘Black Jesus’ Resurrected: Racial Stereotypes or Subversive Comedy?
August 8, 2014
That awkward moment when you wonder not just “Who did I just offend?”The Case Against Cards Against Humanity: Is Max Temkin a Horrible Person? (Does It Matter?)
July 29, 2014
He did not offend very often, but one never knew when he might not.Weighed and Wanting
"You do not offend, but you misunderstand me," said Belinda.Tales And Novels, Volume 3 (of 10)
Better not offend a fairy, even though no higher than a thimble!Welsh Fairy Tales
William Elliott Griffis
I have been requested to take a holiday, and, rather than offend the powers that be, have given in.The Slave Of The Lamp
Henry Seton Merriman
But I will not offend fastidious ears with any syllable of my rougher tongue.Ranald Bannerman's Boyhood
- to hurt the feelings, sense of dignity, etc, of (a person)
- (tr) to be disagreeable to; disgustthe smell offended him
- (intr except in archaic uses) to break (a law or laws in general)
Word Origin and History for offend
early 14c., "to sin against (someone)," from Old French ofendre "transgress, antagonize," and directly from Latin offendere "to hit, strike against," figuratively "to stumble, commit a fault, displease, trespass against, provoke," from ob "against" (see ob-) + -fendere "to strike" (found only in compounds; see defend).
Meaning "to violate (a law), to make a moral false step, to commit a crime" is from late 14c. Meaning "to wound the feelings" is from late 14c. The literal sense of "to attack, assail" is attested from late 14c.; this has been lost in Modern English, but is preserved in offense and offensive. Related: Offended; offending.