- justifie (obsolete)
From Middle English justifien, from Old French justifier, from Late Latin justificare (“make just”), from Latin justus, iustus (“just”) + ficare (“make”), from facere, equivalent to just + -ify.
justify (third-person singular simple present justifies, present participle justifying, simple past and past participle justified)
- (transitive) To provide an acceptable explanation for.
- How can you justify spending so much money on clothes?
- Paying too much for car insurance is not justified.
- 1667, John Milton, “Book I”, in Paradise Lost. […], London: […] [Samuel Simmons], […], →OCLC; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, →OCLC:
- What in me is dark
Illumine, what is low raise and support;
That to the highth of this great Argument
I may assert th’ Eternal Providence,
And justifie the wayes of God to men.
- (transitive) To be a good, acceptable reason for; warrant.
- Nothing can justify your rude behaviour last night.
- 1861, Edward Everett, The Great Issues Now Before the Country, An oration delivered at the New York Academy of Music, July 4, 1861, New York: James G. Gregory, page 8:
- Unless the oppression is so extreme as to justify revolution, it would not justify the evil of breaking up a government, under an abstract constitutional right to do so.
- (transitive) To arrange (text) on a page or a computer screen such that the left and right ends of all lines within paragraphs are aligned.
- The text will look better justified.
- (transitive) To absolve, and declare to be free of blame or sin.
- 1591 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Second Part of Henry the Sixt, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies. […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act II, scene iii]:
- 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), London: […] Robert Barker, […], →OCLC, Acts 13:39:
- And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.
- (reflexive) To give reasons for one’s actions; to make an argument to prove that one is in the right.
- She felt no need to justify herself for deciding not to invite him.
- 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), London: […] Robert Barker, […], →OCLC, Luke 16:15:
- And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.
- 1848, Anne Brontë, “Chapter 13”, in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall:
- […] I was equally unable to justify myself and unwilling to acknowledge my errors […]
- To prove; to ratify; to confirm.
- c. 1607–1608, William Shakeſpeare, The Late, And much admired Play, Called Pericles, Prince of Tyre. […], London: Imprinted at London for Henry Goſſon, […], published 1609, →OCLC, [Act V, scene 1]:
- She is not dead at Tarsus, as she should have been,
By savage Cleon: she shall tell thee all;
When thou shalt kneel, and justify in knowledge
She is thy very princess.
- c. 1610–1611 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Winters Tale”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act I, scene ii]:
- […] say
My wife’s a hobby-horse, deserves a name
As rank as any flax-wench that puts to
Before her troth-plight: say’t and justify’t.
- (law) To show (a person) to have had a sufficient legal reason for an act that has been made the subject of a charge or accusation.
- (law) To qualify (oneself) as a surety by taking oath to the ownership of sufficient property.
- 1839, John Bouvier, A Law Dictionary Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States of America and of the Several States of the American Union, volume I, Philadelphia: T. & J.W. Johnson, page 557:
- JUSTIFYING BAIL, practice, is the production of bail in court, who there justify themselves against the exception of the plaintiff.
provide an acceptable explanation
give a good, acceptable reason for something
arrange lines on a page or computer screen
to absolve, and declare to be free of blame or sin
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.