American English

Definition of guilt noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1guilt (about something) the unhappy feelings caused by knowing or thinking that you have done something wrong She had feelings of guilt about leaving her children and going to work. Many survivors were left with a sense of guilt. a guilt complex (= an exaggerated sense of guilt )
  2. 2the fact that someone has done something illegal His guilt was proved beyond all doubt by the prosecution. an admission of guilt opposite innocence
  3. 3blame or responsibility for doing something wrong or for something bad that has happened The investigation will try to find out where the guilt for the disaster really lies.
  4. NAmE//ˈɡɪltləs//
  5. Idioms
    a guilt trip (informal)
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    things you say to someone in order to make them feel guilty about something Don't lay a guilt trip on your child about schoolwork.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: guilt