Open main menu



From Middle English transgressen, from Old French transgresser and Latin transgressus, past participle of transgredī.



transgress (third-person singular simple present transgresses, present participle transgressing, simple past and past participle transgressed)

  1. (transitive) To exceed or overstep some limit or boundary.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Dryden
      surpassing common faith, transgressing nature's law
  2. (transitive) To act in violation of some law.
    • (Can we date this quote?) John Milton
      For man will hearken to his glozing lies, / And easily transgress the sole command.
  3. (intransitive, construed with against) To commit an offense; to sin.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Beaumont and Fletcher
      Why give you peace to this imperate beast / That hath so long transgressed you?
  4. (intransitive, of the sea) To spread over land along a shoreline; to inundate.

Related termsEdit