• synonyms


[uh-lejd, uh-lej-id]
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  1. declared or stated to be as described; asserted: The alleged murderer could not be located for questioning.
  2. doubtful; suspect; supposed: The alleged cure-all produced no results when it was tested by reputable doctors.
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Origin of alleged

late Middle English word dating back to 1400–50; see origin at allege, -ed2
Related formsun·al·leged, adjective


verb (used with object), al·leged, al·leg·ing.
  1. to assert without proof.
  2. to declare with positiveness; affirm; assert: to allege a fact.
  3. to declare before a court or elsewhere, as if under oath.
  4. to plead in support of; offer as a reason or excuse.
  5. Archaic. to cite or quote in confirmation.
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Origin of allege

1275–1325; Middle English alleg(g)en, probably < Old French aleguer (< Medieval Latin, Latin allēgāre to adduce in support of a plea; see allegation), conflated with Anglo-French, Old French aleg(i)er to justify, free, literally, to lighten (< Late Latin alleviāre; see alleviate); homonymous Middle English v. alleg(g)en, with literal sense of Old French aleg(i)er, replaced by allay in 16th cent.
Related formsal·lege·a·ble, adjectiveal·leg·er, nounmis·al·lege, verb (used with object), mis·al·leged, mis·al·leg·ing.pre·al·lege, verb (used with object), pre·al·leged, pre·al·leg·ing.re·al·lege, verb (used with object), re·al·leged, re·al·leg·ing.
Can be confusedaccuse allege charge


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Synonym study

1. See maintain.


2. deny.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


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British Dictionary definitions for alleged


adjective (prenominal)
  1. stated or described to be such; presumedthe alleged murderer
  2. dubiousan alleged miracle
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verb (tr; may take a clause as object)
  1. to declare in or as if in a court of law; state without or before proofhe alleged malpractice
  2. to put forward (an argument or plea) for or against an accusation, claim, etc
  3. archaic to cite or quote, as to confirm
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Word Origin

C14 aleggen, ultimately from Latin allēgāre to dispatch on a mission, from lēx law
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

Word Origin and History for alleged


mid-15c., "quoted," past participle adjective from allege. Attested from 1610s in sense of "brought forth in court;" 1670s as "asserted but not proved."

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c.1300. It has the form of one French verb and the meaning of another. The form is Anglo-French aleger, Old French eslegier "to clear at law," from Latin ex- "out of" (see ex-) and litigare "bring suit" (see litigate); however eslegier meant "acquit, clear of charges in a lawsuit." It somehow acquired the meaning of French alléguer, from Latin allegare "send for, bring forth, name, produce in evidence," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + legare "to depute, send" (see legate). Related: Alleged; alleging.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper