Definition of recriminate in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /rəˈkriməˌnāt/


[no object] archaic
Make counteraccusations: his party would never recriminate, never return evil for evil
More example sentences
  • The other excluded team in Group A, Celtic, also has reason to recriminate.


Early 17th century: from medieval Latin recriminat- 'accused in return', from the verb recriminari, from re- (expressing opposition) + criminare 'accuse' (from crimen 'crime').

  • crime from Middle English:

    The early meanings of crime were ‘wickedness’ and ‘sin’. The word comes via Old French from Latin crimen ‘judgement or offence’, which was based on cernere ‘to judge’ also in concern (Late Middle English), recriminate (early 17th century), and discern (Late Middle English). The expression crime doesn't pay was a slogan associated with the 1930s American radio crime series The Shadow, in which it was spoken by the Shadow at the end of each broadcast. It originated earlier, though, and was the title of a silent film in 1912.

Words that rhyme with recriminate

discriminate, eliminate, incriminate

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: re·crim·i·nate

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.