"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[trans-gres, tranz-] /trænsˈgrɛs, trænz-/
verb (used without object)
to violate a law, command, moral code, etc.; offend; sin.
verb (used with object)
to pass over or go beyond (a limit, boundary, etc.):
to transgress bounds of prudence.
to go beyond the limits imposed by (a law, command, etc.); violate; infringe:
to transgress the will of God.
Origin of transgress
1520-30; < Latin trānsgressus (past participle of trānsgredī to step across), equivalent to trāns- trans- + -gred- (combining form of gradī to step; see grade) + -tus past participle suffix, with dt > ss
Related forms
transgressive, adjective
transgressively, adverb
transgressor, noun
nontransgressive, adjective
nontransgressively, adverb
untransgressed, adjective
1. err, trespass. 3. contravene, disobey.
3. obey. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for transgressive
  • Links literary and artistic depictions of peasants' clothing and transgressive behavior to elite anxieties.
  • The satire mag is gearing up for a new decade of transgressive skewering, this time as an animated sketch-comedy series.
  • He has always been interested in a mix of the traditional and the transgressive.
  • We might as well start treading on that transgressive turf.
  • But the film feels too formulaic and too familiar to produce the transgressive thrills of early underground work.
  • With a transgressive sense of humor, the artists in this joint exhibition invite us to peek into closets of various kinds.
  • In a different environment, this would qualify as transgressive brilliance.
  • It had cream, five eggs, sugar and a transgressive dose of salt.
  • Art by its nature is a transgressive act, and artists must accept being punished for it.
  • As it turned out, this actor-writer-director wanted some ice cream, another transgressive reward at the end of a big day.
British Dictionary definitions for transgressive


going beyond acceptable boundaries of taste, convention, or the law: transgressive art, transgressive pursuits
Derived Forms
transgressively, adverb


to break (a law, rule, etc)
to go beyond or overstep (a limit)
Derived Forms
transgressor, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin transgredī, from trans- + gradī to step
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 transgressive

1640s, from transgress + -ive.



late 15c., from Middle French transgresser (14c.), from Latin transgressus, past participle of transgredi "to step across" (see transgression). Related: Transgressed; transgressing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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