• synonyms


  1. deserving blame or censure; blameworthy.
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Origin of culpable

1275–1325; Middle English < Latin culpābilis, equivalent to culpā(re) to hold liable (derivative of culpa blame) + -bilis -ble; replacing Middle English coupable < Middle French < Latin as above
Related formscul·pa·bil·i·ty, cul·pa·ble·ness, nouncul·pa·bly, adverbnon·cul·pa·ble, adjectivenon·cul·pa·ble·ness, nounnon·cul·pa·bly, adverbun·cul·pa·ble, adjective

Synonyms for culpable

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

Examples from the Web for culpably

Historical Examples of culpably

  • I feel that I have been culpably negligent, and altogether too trustful.'

    A Woman Intervenes

    Robert Barr

  • But I think that, in this business, the police have been culpably supine.

    Henry Dunbar

    M. E. Braddon

  • He is then culpably careless, though not actually malignant.

  • And they that think it culpably defective in phrase, aptness, or elegancy of style.

    A Christian Directory

    Baxter Richard

  • All the Dares had been culpably pampered, and of course it bore its fruits.

British Dictionary definitions for culpably


  1. deserving censure; blameworthy
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Derived Formsculpability or culpableness, nounculpably, adverb

Word Origin for culpable

C14: from Old French coupable, from Latin culpābilis, from culpāre to blame, from culpa fault
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 culpably



late 13c., coupable, from Old French coupable (12c., Modern French coupable), from Latin culpabilis "worthy of blame," from culpare "to blame," from culpa "crime, fault, blame, guilt, error." English (and for a time French) restored the first Latin -l- in later Middle Ages.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper