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

  • noun Offense or resentment.
  • noun Shadow or shade.
  • noun Trees or foliage affording shade.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To shade.
  • noun Shade; a shadow; obscurity.
  • noun That which affords a shade; specifically, a screen of trees or foliage.
  • noun A slight appearance; an apparition; a shade.
  • noun The feeling of being overshadowed, as by another standing in one's light or way; hence, suspicion of slight or injury; offense; resentment.
  • noun Synonyms See pique and animosity.

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

  • noun Shade; shadow; obscurity; hence, that which affords a shade, as a screen of trees or foliage.
  • noun obsolete Shadowy resemblance; shadow.
  • noun The feeling of being overshadowed; jealousy of another, as standing in one's light or way; hence, suspicion of injury or wrong; offense; resentment.

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

  • noun Feeling of anger or annoyance caused by something offensive.
  • noun Feeling of doubt.
  • noun Leaves that provide shade, as the foliage of trees
  • noun obsolete shadow, shade
  • verb transitive To displease or cause offense.
  • verb transitive To shade.

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

  • noun a feeling of anger caused by being offended


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

[Middle English, shade, from Old French, from Latin umbrāticum, neuter of umbrāticus, of shade, from umbra, shadow.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin umbrāticus ("in the shade"), from umbra ("shadow", "shade")



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  • "Rarely has it been thought that the way to show you deserve to be the most powerful person on earth is to demonstrate you're also the touchiest. This presidential campaign has been an offense fest. From the indignation over a fashion writer's observation about Hillary Clinton's cleavage, to the outraged response to the infamous Obama New Yorker cover, to the histrionics over "lipstick on a pig," taking offense has been a political leitmotif. Slate's John Dickerson observed that umbrage is this year's hottest campaign tactic. And we can assume it will reach an operatic crescendo in these final weeks before Election Day."

    Emily Yoffe in Slate

    October 20, 2008

  • I take umbrage at seeing this written umbridge, which happens disappointingly often. One columnist I know of does it regularly.

    October 20, 2008

  • Is it all post-Harry Potter, or did you observe the misspelling before that thoroughly odious woman arrived on the scene? (Miss Umbridge, that is, not Ms Rowling.)

    October 20, 2008

  • 'Snot the 'Tiser is it, pleth?

    October 20, 2008

  • I'm not sure I knew the word pre-Harry Potter, to be honest. I was but 12 when Dolores made her debut.

    The one and only, bilb. What a rag.

    October 20, 2008

  • Should we be happy that JKR reinvigorated this word, or be appalled that as a result no-one can spell it?

    October 20, 2008

  • Oh happy, I think. Better to get people using a word. Spelling is easily fixed; even Microsoft can do it. Although apparently not South Australian(?) sub-editors.

    October 20, 2008

  • I always think the Archers should live here.

    January 10, 2009

  • Umbrage has an official website. (Thanks to ptero for linking it to rufkm.)

    February 26, 2009

  • You're welcome! And let me just mention marathon of phony umbrage taking, a triumph of the Wordie art and one of my favorite pages on the site.

    February 26, 2009