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[rawng-fuh l, rong-]
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  1. unjust or unfair: a wrongful act; a wrongful charge.
  2. having no legal right; unlawful: The court ruled it was a wrongful diversion of trust income.

Origin of wrongful

Middle English word dating back to 1275–1325; see origin at wrong, -ful
Related formswrong·ful·ly, adverbwrong·ful·ness, nounun·wrong·ful, adjectiveun·wrong·ful·ly, adverbun·wrong·ful·ness, noun
Can be confusedwrong wrongful
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wrongful

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The good Bishop of Montreal absolved her from her wrongful vow.

  • Any wrongful and direct application of force is redressed by that action.

    The Common Law

    Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

  • That is the image of Ægisthus, upon whom vengeance came for the wrongful deed.

    Homer's Odyssey

    Denton J. Snider

  • He pleaded with them to repent and turn from their wrongful course.

    Wilford Woodruff

    Matthias F. Cowley

  • Who seeks to please him in any wrongful way will assuredly succeed.

British Dictionary definitions for wrongful


  1. immoral, unjust, or illegal
Derived Formswrongfully, adverbwrongfulness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

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