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misdemeanor

[mis-di-mee-ner] /ˌmɪs dɪˈmi nər/
noun
1.
Law. a criminal offense defined as less serious than a felony.
2.
an instance of misbehavior; misdeed.
Origin of misdemeanor
1480-1490
1480-90; mis-1 + demeanor
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for misdemeanor

misdemeanour

/ˌmɪsdɪˈmiːnə/
noun
1.
(criminal law) (formerly) an offence generally less heinous than a felony and which until 1967 involved a different form of trial Compare felony
2.
any minor offence or transgression
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 misdemeanor
n.

also misdemeanour, "legal class of indictable offenses," late 15c.; from mis- (1) "wrong" + Middle English demenure (see demeanor). Related: Misdemeanors; misdemeanours.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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misdemeanor in Culture
misdemeanor [(mis-di-mee-nuhr)]

A minor crime, punishable by a fine or a light jail term. Common misdemeanors, such as traffic violations, are usually dealt with informally, without a trial. (Compare felony.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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