from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To speak or pronounce incorrectly.
  • intransitive verb To speak mistakenly, inappropriately, or rashly.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To speak wrongly or improperly.
  • To speak disrespectfully or disparagingly: with of.
  • To speak or pronounce wrongly; utter imperfectly.
  • To express improperly or imperfectly; speak otherwise than according to one's intention: used reflexively: as, I misspoke myself. [Colloq.] To blame or calumniate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To utter wrongly.
  • intransitive verb To err in speaking.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive, obsolete To speak insultingly or disrespectfully.
  • verb intransitive To fail to pronounce, utter, or speak correctly

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

  • verb pronounce a word incorrectly


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From mis- +‎ speak.


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  • The word "misspeak" has a long and varied history, says John Simpson, chief editor of the Oxford English Dictionary.

    "It goes back to the Old English period before the Norman Conquest to mean to murmur or grumble.

    "But it's got quite a wide sense of meanings, to speak insultingly or improperly or to speak disparagingly or disrespectfully or to speak evil of. Then in the mid to late Middle Ages, it was to pronounce incorrectly."

    March 27, 2008