[ trans-gres, tranz- ]
See synonyms for: transgresstransgressed on

verb (used without object)
  1. to violate a law, command, moral code, etc.; offend; sin.

verb (used with object)
  1. to pass over or go beyond (a limit, boundary, etc.): to transgress bounds of prudence.

  2. to go beyond the limits imposed by (a law, command, etc.); violate; infringe: to transgress the will of God.

Origin of transgress

First recorded in 1520–30; from Latin trānsgressus (past participle of trānsgredī “to step across”), equivalent to trāns- trans- + -gred- (combining form of gradī “to step”; see grade) + -tus past participle suffix, with dt becoming ss

Other words for transgress

Opposites for transgress

Other words from transgress

  • trans·gres·sive, adjective
  • trans·gres·sive·ly, adverb
  • trans·gres·sor, noun
  • non·trans·gres·sive, adjective
  • non·trans·gres·sive·ly, adverb
  • un·trans·gressed, adjective

Words Nearby transgress Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use transgress in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for transgress


/ (trænzˈɡrɛs) /

  1. to break (a law, rule, etc)

  2. to go beyond or overstep (a limit)

Origin of transgress

C16: from Latin transgredī, from trans- + gradī to step

Derived forms of transgress

  • transgressor, noun

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