Is it ensure, insure, or assure?


[sen-sher] /ˈsɛn ʃər/
strong or vehement expression of disapproval:
The newspapers were unanimous in their censure of the tax proposal.
an official reprimand, as by a legislative body of one of its members.
verb (used with object), censured, censuring.
to criticize or reproach in a harsh or vehement manner:
She is more to be pitied than censured.
verb (used without object), censured, censuring.
to give censure, adverse criticism, disapproval, or blame.
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin cēnsūra censor's office, assessment, equivalent to cēns(us) past participle of cēnsēre (see censor) + -ūra -ure
Related forms
censurer, noun
censureless, adjective
miscensure, verb, miscensured, miscensuring.
precensure, verb (used with object), precensured, precensuring.
procensure, adjective
supercensure, noun
uncensured, adjective
uncensuring, adjective
Can be confused
blame, censure, condemn (see synonym study at blame)
censer, censor, censure, sensor.
1. condemnation, reproof, reproach, reprehension, rebuke, reprimand, stricture, animadversion. See abuse. 3. reprove, rebuke, chide. See blame, reprimand.
1–3. praise. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for censured
  • He does not get banned from publication, kicked out of his job, or even censured by relevant scientific organizations.
  • If you merely threaten to do it, you will probably be censured or your license to practice will be suspended.
  • After all, an industry which can make money with more than two-thirds of its capacity idle is more to be censured than pitied.
  • The editors knew they would be censured for it, but they did it anyway.
  • Square had delivered his opinion so openly, that if he was now silent, he must submit to have his judgment censured.
  • The use of double rhymes in this poem has been censured.
  • He was censured, but the necessary two-thirds vote for expulsion could not be secured.
  • It would be much worse if they censured themselves and smiled through their teeth instead.
  • The committee therefore recommended that both be censured and that the contempt order suspending them be lifted.
  • The commission recommended that the judge be publicly censured.
British Dictionary definitions for censured


severe disapproval; harsh criticism
to criticize (someone or something) severely; condemn
Derived Forms
censurer, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin cēnsūra, from cēnsēre to consider, assess
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 censured



late 14c., originally ecclesiastical, from Latin censura "judgment, opinion," also "office of a censor," from census, past participle of censere "appraise, estimate, assess" (see censor (n.)). General sense of "a finding of fault and an expression of condemnation" is from c.1600.


1580s, from censure (n.) or else from French censurer, from censure (n.). Related: Censured; censuring.

Such men are so watchful to censure, that the have seldom much care to look for favourable interpretations of ambiguities, to set the general tenor of life against single failures, or to know how soon any slip of inadvertency has been expiated by sorrow and retractation; but let fly their fulminations, without mercy or prudence, against slight offences or casual temerities, against crimes never committed, or immediately repented. [Johnson, "Life of Sir Thomas Browne," 1756]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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