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exonerate

[ig-zon-uh-reyt] /ɪgˈzɒn əˌreɪt/
verb (used with object), exonerated, exonerating.
1.
to clear, as of an accusation; free from guilt or blame; exculpate:
He was exonerated from the accusation of cheating.
2.
to relieve, as from an obligation, duty, or task.
Origin of exonerate
late Middle English
1515-1525
1515-25; late Middle English < Latin exonerātus (past participle of exonerāre to unburden, discharge), equivalent to ex- ex-1 + oner- (stem of onus) a burden + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
exoneration, noun
exonerative, adjective
exonerator, noun
unexonerated, adjective
unexonerative, adjective
Can be confused
exculpate, exonerate, inculpate.
Synonyms
1. vindicate. See absolve. 2. release, discharge, free.
Antonyms
1. blame.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for exonerate
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This is clear from the pains you took to exonerate your conscience, in your generosity to the orphans.

    A Strange Story, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • Whether will the evidence preponderate to prove her your wife or to exonerate you?

    The Daltons, Volume II (of II) Charles James Lever
  • As to the people on board the vessel, I exonerated them then, and I exonerate them now, from all blame.

  • "I believe you can exonerate the boy entirely," said the doctor.

    The Hill Horace Annesley Vachell
  • Her consent makes no difference, and even the solicitation of the act on the part of the child will not exonerate the accused.

    Aids to Forensic Medicine and Toxicology W. G. Aitchison Robertson
British Dictionary definitions for exonerate

exonerate

/ɪɡˈzɒnəˌreɪt/
verb (transitive)
1.
to clear or absolve from blame or a criminal charge
2.
to relieve from an obligation or task; exempt
Derived Forms
exoneration, noun
exonerative, adjective
exonerator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin exonerāre to free from a burden, from onus a burden
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 exonerate
v.

mid-15c., from Latin exoneratus, past participle of exonerare "remove a burden, discharge, unload," from ex- "off" (see ex-) + onerare "to unload; overload, oppress," from onus (genitive oneris) "burden" (see onus). Related: Exonerated; exonerating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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