Ex*cuse"(?), n. [Cf. F. excuse. See Excuse, v. t.] 1. The act of excusing, apologizing, exculpating, pardoning, releasing, and the like; acquittal; release; absolution; justification; extenuation.
Pleading so wisely in excuse of it.Shak.
2. That which is offered as a reason for being excused; a plea offered in extenuation of a fault or irregular deportment; apology; as, an
excuse for neglect of duty;
excuses for delay of payment.
Hence with denial vain and coy excuse.Milton.
3. That which excuses; that which extenuates or justifies a fault. "It hath the excuse of youth."
If eyes were made for seeing.Emerson.
Then beauty is its own excuse for being.
Syn. -- See Apology.
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