[ ik-sep-shuhn ]
See synonyms for: exceptionexceptions on Thesaurus.com

  1. the act of excepting or the fact of being excepted.

  2. something excepted; an instance or case not conforming to the general rule.

  1. an adverse criticism, especially on a particular point; opposition of opinion; objection; demurral: a statement liable to exception.

  2. Law.

    • an objection, as to a ruling of the court in the course of a trial.

    • a notation that an objection is preserved for purposes of appeal: saving an exception.

Idioms about exception

  1. take exception,

    • to make an objection; demur: They took exception to several points in the contract.

    • to take offense: She took exception to what I said about her brother.

Origin of exception

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English excepcioun, from Latin exceptiōn-, stem of exceptiō; equivalent to except1 + -ion

Other words from exception

  • ex·cep·tion·less, adjective
  • pre·ex·cep·tion, noun

Words Nearby exception

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use exception in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for exception


/ (ɪkˈsɛpʃən) /

  1. the act of excepting or fact of being excepted; omission

  2. anything excluded from or not in conformance with a general rule, principle, class, etc

  1. criticism, esp when it is adverse; objection

  2. law (formerly) a formal objection in the course of legal proceedings

  3. law a clause or term in a document that restricts the usual legal effect of the document

  4. take exception

    • (usually foll by to) to make objections (to); demur (at)

    • (often foll by at) to be offended (by); be resentful (at)

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with exception


In addition to the idioms beginning with exception

  • exception proves the rule, the

also see:

  • except for (with the exception of)
  • make an exception
  • take exception to

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.