excuse

[ verb ik-skyooz; noun ik-skyoos ]
/ verb ɪkˈskyuz; noun ɪkˈskyus /
||

verb (used with object), ex·cused, ex·cus·ing.

noun

Idioms

    Excuse me, (used as a polite expression, as when addressing a stranger, when interrupting or disagreeing with someone, or to request repetition of what has just been said.)

Origin of excuse

1175–1225; (v.) Middle English escusen < Old French escuser < Latin excūsāre to put outside, exonerate, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + -cūsāre, derivative of causa cause; (noun) Middle English escuse < Old French, derivative of escuser; modern spelling with ex- on the model of ex-1

SYNONYMS FOR excuse

1 Excuse, forgive, pardon imply being lenient or giving up the wish to punish. Excuse means to overlook some (usually) slight offense: to excuse bad manners. Forgive is applied to excusing more serious offenses: to forgive and forget. Pardon usually applies to a specific act of lenience or mercy by an official or superior: The governor was asked to pardon the condemned criminal.
3 extenuate, palliate.
4 free.
8 justification. Excuse, apology both imply an explanation of some failure or failing. Excuse implies a desire to avoid punishment or rebuke. Apology usually implies acknowledgment that one has been in the wrong.
11 pretense, evasion, makeshift.

Related forms

Can be confused

alibi excuse (see usage note at alibi) (see synonym study at the current entry)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for excusal

excuse

verb (ɪkˈskjuːz) (tr)


noun (ɪkˈskjuːs)

Derived Forms

excusable, adjectiveexcusableness, nounexcusably, adverb

Word Origin for excuse

C13: from Latin excusāre, from ex- 1 + -cūsare, from causa cause, accusation
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