Why was clemency trending last week?


[uh-mis] /əˈmɪs/
out of the right or proper course, order, or condition; improperly; wrongly; astray:
Did I speak amiss?
adjective, (usually used predicatively)
improper; wrong; faulty:
I think something is amiss in your calculations.
take amiss, to be offended at or resentful of (something not meant to cause offense or resentment); misunderstand:
I couldn't think of a way to present my view so that no one would take it amiss.
Origin of amiss
1200-50; Middle English amis, equivalent to a- a-1 + mis wrong. See miss1
1. inappropriately, unsuitably. 2. mistaken, erroneous; awry, askew.
1. rightly, properly. 2. correct, true. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for amiss
  • They also discuss typical side-effects of surgery, the signs when something's going amiss and what to expect during recovery.
  • Being without an attitude in comedy is like something amiss in one's make-up.
  • Things really do go bump in the dark, and the baby and family dog figure out that something is amiss long before the adults do.
  • Clearly something here is badly amiss.
  • There is something seriously amiss here and it has nothing to do with science.
  • Second, much has been made of the failure of officers and directors to notice that something was amiss at these big banks.
  • When a dog is on the street alone, we assume something's amiss.
  • Chrissie suspects something is amiss at the school spelling bee.
  • About 1000 feet from the bottom, Cameron and crew notice something is amiss.
  • But even waiting at the gate, something was amiss.
British Dictionary definitions for amiss


in an incorrect, inappropriate, or defective manner
take something amiss, to be annoyed or offended by something
(postpositive) wrong, incorrect, or faulty
Word Origin
C13 a mis, from mis wrong; see miss1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for amiss

mid-13c., amis "off the mark," also "out of order," literally "on the miss," from a "in, on" (see a- (1)) + missen "fail to hit" (see miss (v.)). To take (something) amiss originally (late 14c.) was "to miss the meaning of" (see mistake). Now it means "to misinterpret in a bad sense."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with amiss


see under take the wrong way
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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