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[in-kuhl-peyt, in-kuhl-peyt] /ɪnˈkʌl peɪt, ˈɪn kʌl peɪt/
verb (used with object), inculpated, inculpating.
to charge with fault; blame; accuse.
to involve in a charge; incriminate.
Origin of inculpate
1790-1800; < Late Latin inculpātus past participle of inculpāre to blame, equivalent to Latin in- in-2 + culp(a) fault + -ātus -ate1; cf. culpable
Related forms
inculpation, noun
[in-kuhl-puh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ɪnˈkʌl pəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/ (Show IPA),
Can be confused
exculpate, exonerate, inculpate.
exculpatory, inculpatory.
1, 2. exonerate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for inculpate
  • Evidence is prejudicial because it tends to inculpate defendant.
  • In fact, the codefendant's guilty plea would have likely tended to inculpate defendant.
  • Evidence tending to inculpate the defendant always carries with it some prejudice.
British Dictionary definitions for inculpate


/ˈɪnkʌlˌpeɪt; ɪnˈkʌlpeɪt/
(transitive) to incriminate; cause blame to be imputed to
Derived Forms
inculpation, noun
inculpative (ɪnˈkʌlpətɪv), inculpatory (ɪnˈkʌlpətərɪ; -trɪ) adjective
Word Origin
C18: from Late Latin inculpāre, from Latin culpāre to blame, from culpa fault, blame
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 inculpate

1799, "to accuse, bring charges against," from Medieval Latin inculpatus, past participle of inculpare "to reproach, blame, censure," from Latin in- "in" (see in- (2)) + culpare "to blame," from culpa "fault." But inculpable (late 15c.) means "not culpable, free from blame," from Latin in- "not" (see in- (1)) + culpare.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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