Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A wrong or illegal deed; a wrongdoing.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. That which was done that should not have been, ranging from any sin or moral offense to various degrees of crime.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An evil deed; a wicked action.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An evil or mischievous deed; a reprehensible or wicked action.
  • n. Synonyms See list under misdemeanor.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. improper or wicked or immoral behavior

Etymologies

From Middle English misdede, from Old English misdǣd ("misdeed"), from Proto-Germanic *missa- (“mis-”), *dēdiz (“deed, act”), equivalent to mis- +‎ deed. Cognate with Scots misded ("misdeed"), West Frisian misdied ("misdeed"), Dutch misdaad ("misdeed"), German Missetat ("misdeed"), Swedish missdåd ("misdeed"), Gothic  (missadēþs, "misdeed"). More at mis-, deed. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Claiming a misdeed was a mistake is akin to the evangelist philanderer saying, “I thought the woman was my wife,” or the baseball player claiming, “I thought I was injecting vitamins,” or the politician perjurer protesting, “It depends on what the definition of the truth is.”

    It's not a mistake when you lie!

  • A "breach" of contract, "possible misappropriation," or "misdeed" - would be necessary to begin legal proceedings, but there "was not any sense of illegality at that point," he said.

    06/05/2005

  • In fact, it was so -- the misdeed was a double-edged blade which cut both ways.

    The Lincoln Story Book

  • The latter now recalled his misdeed with sorrow and shame in an impassioned plea for amnesty to all political offenders, including

    The Life of Napoleon Bonaparte Vol. I. (of IV.)

  • Where is your compassion for those of us who end up paying for this kind of misdeed?

    Lean Left » Blog Archive » Racist Judicial Activism: GOP’s Newest Divisive Initiative

  • Consider your hand-wringing sufficient penance for your "misdeed," but don't waste to much time worrying about how knuckleheads respond to thoughtful criticism.

    Blue Skunk Blog

  • He bows down to other countries, and continually apologizes to other countries for America's "misdeed" such as our response to the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • In fact, it was so ” the misdeed was a double-edged blade which cut both ways.

    The Lincoln Story Book

  • The nuns' collective acceptance of Delores' strange and almost non-existent back-story without any suspicion of misdeed demonstrates not only the sisters' uncanny trust in humankind, but also serves as a wink and a nod from the producers that this story requires a fair share of faith from the audience.

    Danny Groner: Sister Act on Broadway Is Heavenly

  • Any misdeed of a Conservative politician no matter how minor is front page news for days, to be discussed and analysed at length.

    More on the banning of Geert Wilders

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.