Definition of censure in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsɛnʃə/


[with object]
Express severe disapproval of (someone or something), especially in a formal statement: the company was heavily censured by inspectors from the Department of Trade shareholders censured the bank for its extravagance
More example sentences
  • Charney has been criticised for paradoxically censuring the exploitation of the worker, while pushing the instrumental use of sexuality and women.
  • However, there is no reason why a human system for judging and formally censuring the behaviour of others should be a slave to the vagaries of chance.
  • Meanwhile he had been recalled to Adelaide and summoned before a Royal Commission where he was censured and criticized.


[mass noun]
The formal expression of severe disapproval: two MPs were singled out for censure [count noun]: despite episcopal censures, the practice continued
More example sentences
  • Both men, in previous guises, have drawn severe judicial censure, for their actions against the CFMEU.
  • The investigation ended with much tongue-wagging but no formal censure.
  • Each of the terrible ten is accompanied by a helpful little paragraph explaining just why it merits our censure.
condemnation, criticism, attack, abuse, revilement;
reprimand, rebuke, admonishment, admonition, reproof, reproval, upbraiding, castigation, berating, denunciation, disapproval, reproach, scolding, chiding, reprehension, obloquy, vituperation
rare excoriation, objurgation


Censure and censor, although quite different in meaning, are frequently confused. Both words can function as verbs and nouns, but censure means ‘express severe disapproval of’ ( the country was censured for human rights abuses) or ‘the expression of severe disapproval’, while censor means ‘examine (a book, film, etc.) and suppress unacceptable parts of it’ ( the letters she received were censored) or ‘an official who censors books, films, etc.’.



Pronunciation: /ˈsɛnʃ(ə)rəb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • Douglas indeed seemed to be trying to have it both ways, claiming to have an open mind pending full disclosure of the evidence and yet also hinting that he found McCarthy's conduct censurable.
  • When an information resource is collectively provided and placed in the public domain, hijacking sounds even more censurable and in theory resembles a real theft.
  • Committee A is persuaded that the actions against the two professors are censurable.




Late Middle English (in the sense 'judicial sentence'): from Old French censurer (verb), censure (noun), from Latin censura 'judgement, assessment', from censere 'assess'.

Words that rhyme with censure

adventure, bencher, dementia, front-bencher, trencher, venture, wencher

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: cen|sure

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