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Noun: excuse  ik'skyoos
  1. A defence of some offensive behaviour or some failure to keep a promise etc.
    "he kept finding excuses to stay";
    - alibi, exculpation, self-justification
     
  2. A note explaining an absence
    "he had to get his mother to write an excuse for him"
     
  3. A poor example
    "a poor excuse for an automobile";
    - apology
Verb: excuse  ik'skyoos
  1. Accept an excuse for
    "Please excuse my dirty hands";
    - pardon
     
  2. Grant exemption or release to
    "Please excuse me from this class";
    - relieve, let off, exempt
     
  3. Serve as a reason, cause or justification of
    "Your need to sleep late does not excuse your late arrival at work";
    - explain
     
  4. Defend, explain, clear away, or make excuses for by reasoning
    "excuse the child's seemingly crazy behaviour";
    - apologize, apologise [Brit], justify, rationalize, rationalise [Brit]
     
  5. Ask for permission to be released from an engagement
    - beg off
     
  6. Excuse, overlook, or make allowances for; be lenient with
    "excuse someone's behaviour";
    - condone

Derived forms: excused, excusing, excuses

Type of: absolve, account, bespeak, billet, call for, defence [Brit, Cdn], defend, defense [US], example, exemplum, fend for, forgive, free, illustration, instance, justify, line, note, pardon, quest, representative, request, short letter, support, vindicate, vindication

Encyclopedia: Excuse