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See more synonyms for recriminate on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object), re·crim·i·nat·ed, re·crim·i·nat·ing.
  1. to bring a countercharge against an accuser.
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verb (used with object), re·crim·i·nat·ed, re·crim·i·nat·ing.
  1. to accuse in return.
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Origin of recriminate

1595–1605; < Medieval Latin recrīminātus (past participle of recrīminārī to accuse in turn), equivalent to re- re- + crīmin-, stem of crīmen accusation, blame (see crime) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsre·crim·i·na·tion, nounre·crim·i·na·tive, re·crim·i·na·to·ry [ri-krim-uh-nuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /rɪˈkrɪm ə nəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/, adjectivere·crim·i·na·tor, nounun·re·crim·i·na·tive, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for recriminate

criticize, castigate, taunt, denounce, chide, berate, blame, admonish, upbraid, censure, rebuke, reprimand, vilify, reproach, prosecute, sue, name, brand, summon, cite

Examples from the Web for recriminate

Historical Examples of recriminate

  • It required the exercise of some forbearance not to recriminate.

    The Professor at the Breakfast Table

    Oliver Wendell Holmes (Sr.)

  • But let us not recriminate; that matter is not in question now.

  • And then how I should like to recriminate and defend myself indignantly!

    Pencillings by the Way

    N. Parker Willis

  • The lady soothed him and fell into thought, and did not recriminate.

  • To recriminate now, he said, would be as exasperating as unavailable.

British Dictionary definitions for recriminate


  1. (intr) to return an accusation against someone or engage in mutual accusations
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Derived Formsrecriminative or recriminatory, adjectiverecriminator, noun

Word Origin for recriminate

C17: from Medieval Latin recrīmināre, from Latin crīminārī to accuse, from crīmen an accusation; see crime
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 recriminate


"return one accusation with another," c.1600, from Medieval Latin recriminatus, past participle of recriminari "to make charges against," from Latin re- "back, again" (see re-) + criminari "to accuse," from crimen (genitive criminis) "a charge" (see crime). Related: Recriminated; recriminating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper