wrong definition, meaning - what is wrong in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “wrong”

See all translations


adjective uk   /rɒŋ/  us   /rɑːŋ/

wrong adjective (NOT CORRECT)

A1 not correct: Three of your answers were wrong. That clock is wrong - it's 12.30, not 12.15. Some of his facts are questionable, others are plainly (= completely) wrong. A2 If someone is wrong, they are not correct in their judgment or statement about something: You were wrong about the time - the bank closed at 3.30. He's wrong in thinking that we will support the project financially.prove sb wrong to show by your actions that someone's judgment of you was not correct: I thought she couldn't do it, but she proved me wrong.
More examples

wrong adjective (NOT SUITABLE)

C1 not suitable or correct, or not as it should be: She's the wrong person for the job. We must have taken a wrong turning. I'm sorry, you've got the wrong number (= this is not the phone number you wanted). Something that is wrong is not considered to be socially acceptable or suitable: She got in with the wrong crowd (= a group of people who were not considered socially acceptable) at university.B1 If you ask someone what is wrong, you want to know what is worrying or upsetting them: You've been quiet all evening. Is there anything wrong? What's wrong with you today?the wrong way round/around If something is the wrong way round/around, the part that should be at the front is at the back: You've got your skirt on the wrong way round.
More examples

wrong adjective (NOT MORAL)

B2 not considered morally acceptable by most people: Children should be taught that violence is wrong. It was wrong of her to lie to you. What's wrong with having a bit of fun?
More examples

wrong adjective (NOT WORKING)

B1 [after verb] not working correctly: Something's wrong with the television - the picture's gone fuzzy. The doctors are still trying to find out what's wrong.


adverb uk   /rɒŋ/  us   /rɑːŋ/
A2 informal in a way that is not correct: You've spelled my name wrong.
See also
get sth wrong B1 informal to make a mistake in the way you answer or understand something: I spent hours doing that calculation and I still got the answer wrong. You've got it all wrong - it was your boss that she was annoyed with and not you!go wrong
More examples
B2 If a situation or event goes wrong, it becomes unpleasant and is not a success: Our marriage began to go wrong after we had our first child. to make a mistake: These shelves are very easy to put together - you can't go wrong. I thought I'd done this correctly, I just can't understand where I've gone wrong. B1 If a machine goes wrong, it stops working correctly: Our TV keeps going wrong.
More examples


noun uk   /rɒŋ/  us   /rɑːŋ/
[U] what is considered to be morally unacceptable: He has no sense of right and wrong. I was brought up to tell the truth and know right from wrong. As far as her parents are concerned, she can do no wrong (= she is perfect in every way). [C] formal an unfair action: He has done us a great wrong. She was trying to right (= do something to make better) the wrongs of the past.in the wrong If someone is in the wrong, they have made a mistake or done something that is bad or illegal: The driver was unquestionably in the wrong.


verb [T] uk   /rɒŋ/  us   /rɑːŋ/ formal
to treat someone in an unfair or unacceptable way: She felt deeply wronged by his accusations.
(Definition of wrong from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of wrong?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “wrong” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

cup tie

a game between two teams trying to win a cup (= prize), especially in football

Word of the Day

What’s All The Commotion About? (Words to describe sounds)

by Kate Woodford,
May 20, 2015
​​​ In this post we look at a range of words and phrases that we use to describe noise and the absence of noise. Starting with complete quiet, we sometimes use the noun hush to describe silence: A hush fell over the room as the bride walked in./There was a deathly hush (=complete

Read More 

ancestral health noun

May 25, 2015
diet based on the presumed diet of our Palaeolithic ancestors ‘Ancestral health,’ to use a term popular among Paleo followers, has gone mass.

Read More