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[self-juhs-tuh-fi-key-shuh n, self-] /ˈsɛlfˌdʒʌs tə fɪˈkeɪ ʃən, ˌsɛlf-/
the act or fact of justifying oneself, especially of offering excessive reasons, explanations, excuses, etc., for an act, thought, or the like.
Origin of self-justification
1765-75 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for self-justification
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • When the person himself doth, by his self-justification, force me to it.

  • He may think it unwise to be detailed in self-justification.

    Robert Orange John Oliver Hobbes
  • A wordy prayer may afford a quiet sense of self-justification, though it makes the sinner a hypocrite.

    Christian Science Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
  • He was cut to the quick, yet a phantom of self-justification was up in arms.

    Scarlet and Hyssop E. F. Benson
  • But possibly you urge, in self-justification, Others will manufacture spirit, if I do not.

    Select Temperance Tracts American Tract Society
  • "You are a good many pennies the better," said he in self-justification.

    Dodo's Daughter E. F. Benson
  • The prophet anticipates a possible attempt at self-justification; just as in ver.

  • "I'm a good destructive critic," I said in self-justification.

    The Sixth Sense Stephen McKenna
British Dictionary definitions for self-justification


the act or an instance of justifying or providing excuses for one's own behaviour, etc
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 self-justification

1650s, from self- + justification.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Difficulty index for self-justification

Few English speakers likely know this word

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