Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

offense

 - definition
 
 
 
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
noun American English pronunciation: offense /əˈfens/ 
Word Forms
Close
singularoffense
pluraloffenses

Related dictionary definitions

 
  1. 1
    [countable] a crime or illegal activity for which there is a punishment

    a traffic/drug/sex offense

    first/second etc. offense:

    The usual fine is $15 to $100 for a first offense.

    minor offense:

    Four people were arrested on minor offenses.

    criminal offense:

    Killing these animals has been made a criminal offense.

    capital offense (=a crime for which someone can be killed):

    They argued that since the victim was an officer, the criminal should be charged with a capital offense.

    commit an offense:

    He has committed a very serious offense.

    charge someone with an offense:

    The new ruling only applies to suspects who have been charged with an offense.

    convict someone of an offense:

    Walker was convicted of a similar offense in 1987.

  2. 2
    [uncountable] something that you do or say which makes someone else angry or upset
    cause/give offense:

    commercials that cause offense

  3. 4
    [countable] something that makes you feel angry and upset because it is insulting, unfair, or morally wrong
    offense to:

    a performance that is an offense to good taste

phrases

dark pool

a method of financial trading in which share prices are hidden and not openly available to the public

BuzzWord Article

Word of the Day

spinnaker

an extra sail sometimes fitted on the front of a boat used for racing

Open Dictionary

subtweet

to post a tweet, usually a negative one, that mentions a person without using the @ sign, so that they will not see the message on their Twitter feed …

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog