Definition of justify in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈjəstəˌfī/

verb (justifies, justifying, justified)

[with object]
1Show or prove to be right or reasonable: the person appointed has fully justified our confidence
More example sentences
  • Your anxiety may prove to be fully justified, and if after the first year I'm persuaded that you are right I will have an opportunity to remedy the situation.
  • His sentiments were echoed by Richard Crumlish and it seems their confidence has been fully justified after the opening shows.
  • Wall was immense throughout and fully justified the complete confidence management had in him.
give grounds for, give reasons for, give a justification for, explain, give an explanation for, account for;
defend, answer for, vindicate
1.1Be a good reason for: the situation was grave enough to justify further investigation
More example sentences
  • These seem reasons enough to justify his more favourable assessment in recent years.
  • Well, there are a whole lot of reasons to justify the tax cut the president's been advocating.
  • The Court therefore finds that the reasons put forward as justifying the interference found are not sufficient to satisfy the requirements of paragraph of Article 8.
warrant, be good reason for, be a justification for
2 Theology Declare or make righteous in the sight of God.
Example sentences
  • We are justified only by faith in this Jesus, he insists.
  • In Romans 3 Paul insists on six occasions that we are justified by faith.
  • Some falsely claimed that because we are justified by faith, Paul taught that we can sin as much as we like!
3 Printing Adjust (a line of type or piece of text) so that the print fills a space evenly or forms a straight edge at one or both margins.
Example sentences
  • The last of the three margins - the left hand margin - was used to keep a clear line for justifying the text.
  • An earlier version of this article incorrectly reported that justifying online text would yield excessive hyphenation.
  • Now poems are easily detectable on the page, because their right hand margins aren't justified.



Pronunciation: /jəˈstifəkəˌtôrē/
Pronunciation: /ˌjəstəˈfikəˌtôrē/
Example sentences
  • He maintains that any belief meeting this requirement must be based on ‘a justificatory argument,’ hence be ‘inferentially justified’ by other beliefs.
  • But if one's goal is to see that international law is enforced or that human rights are respected, then the stakes and the justificatory context are quite different.
  • She finds that key aspects of defeating such groups are to take away the power of the leader's recruiting and justificatory tools.


Pronunciation: /ˈjəstəˌfīr/
Example sentences
  • In a sense we can take some solace these days from the fact that the enablers and justifiers of torture seem more and more isolated and embattled.
  • The higher the price, the more justifiers must exist in the consumer's mind,’ Danziger explained.
  • One of consumers' favorite justifiers for home decorating purchases is that a particular item has worn out and needs to be replaced.


Middle English (in the senses 'administer justice to' and 'inflict a judicial penalty on'): from Old French justifier, from Christian Latin justificare 'do justice to', from Latin justus (see just).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: jus·ti·fy

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