Meaning of fault

fault

Pronunciation: (fôlt), [key]
— n.
  1. a defect or imperfection; flaw; failing: a fault in the brakes; a fault in one's character.
  2. responsibility for failure or a wrongful act: It is my fault that we have not finished.
  3. an error or mistake: a fault in addition.
  4. a misdeed or transgression: to confess one's faults.
  5. (in tennis, handball, etc.)
    1. a ball that when served does not land in the proper section of an opponent's court.
    2. a failure to serve the ball according to the rules, as from within a certain area.
  6. a break in the continuity of a body of rock or of a vein, with dislocation along the plane of the fracture
  7. (of a horse jumping in a show) any of a number of improper executions in negotiating a jump, as a tick, knockdown, refusal, or run-out.
  8. a partial or total local failure in the insulation or continuity of a conductor or in the functioning of an electric system.
  9. a break in the line of scent; a losing of the scent; check.
  10. lack; want.
  11. to be at fault for a mistake.
    1. open to censure; blameworthy:to be at fault for a mistake.
    2. in a dilemma; puzzled:to be at fault as to where to go.
    3. (of hounds) unable to find the scent.
  12. to seek and make known defects or flaws; complain; criticize: He constantly found fault with my behavior.
  13. to an extreme degree; excessively: She was generous to a fault.
—v.i.
  1. to commit a fault; blunder; err.
  2. to undergo faulting.
—v.t.
  1. to cause a fault in.
  2. to find fault with, blame, or censure.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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