shame - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    [singular] a reason for feeling sad or disappointed

    It seems a shame to waste all this food.

    It was a shame that you couldn’t come with us.

    a great/crying/terrible shame:

    It would have been a crying shame if we had lost the game.

    shame about:

    It was a nice idea. Shame about the way it was done.

  2. 2
    [uncountable] a guilty and embarrassed feeling that you have when you or someone else has behaved badly

    He speaks about his affair without shame.

    bow/hang your head in shame (=hold your head down and look away from people because you feel ashamed):

    The people who let this happen should hang their heads in shame.

    1. a.
      the ability to feel guilty or embarrassed when you or someone else behaves badly

      Has he no shame?

  3. 3
    [uncountable] loss of respect or a good reputation because of your own or someone else’s bad behaviour or bad performance

    They accused her of bringing shame and disgrace on the family.

    There is no shame in failing.

    to someone’s shame:

    To their shame, they were proved wrong.