Definition of peccadillo in English:



  • A small, relatively unimportant offense or sin.

    • ‘In the glow of their log fire, fortified by coffee and cognac, I deliberately steered the conversation towards the peccadilloes of awkward neighbours.’
    • ‘Her quest leads her into the clutches of others who are eager to use her to satisfy their own sexual peccadillos.’
    • ‘But rather all my insecurities and peccadilloes from the past came rushing back to haunt me.’
    • ‘True to its tabloid format, it has always been strong on exposure of their sexual peccadilloes, of which there are many.’
    • ‘The heroine's honour is unjustly impugned, but her alleged crime is such a peccadillo that the emotions associated with it seem ludicrously overblown.’
    • ‘Most peccadillos are as harmless as hobbies.’
    • ‘A series of minor government ministers was involved in a variety of sexual peccadilloes and had to resign.’
    • ‘Over the years I have certainly committed somewhat more than my share of peccadilloes and outright sins.’
    • ‘History has usually forgiven presidents their sexual peccadilloes, and the list of American leaders who have been accused of sexual misconduct, in or out of office, is a long one.’
    • ‘The excruciating embarrassment of finding one's personal peccadillos exposed to public scrutiny makes kiss-and-tell the perfect vengeance-fodder.’
    • ‘Tabloid newspapers have always printed tawdry tales of public figures' peccadilloes, but it hasn't dominated discussion in the same way.’
    • ‘Suddenly stories about pop stars and their legal troubles or sexual peccadilloes were no longer relegated to the women's pages.’
    • ‘She is known for racy novels and short stories about what she sees as the secret sexual peccadilloes of regular women - housewives, businesswomen, sorority sisters.’
    • ‘Hanna does not overlook Britten's peccadilloes.’
    • ‘Their sexual peccadillos, family differences and even flaws of personal character were commonly regarded as their own business, not the public's.’
    • ‘A serious lie is told to cover a minor peccadillo.’
    • ‘It's true, and there are tons of similarly gossipy tales of women's sexual peccadilloes and the embarrassments of ambition.’
    • ‘The company also tries to find out about any client preferences beforehand - not their sexual peccadilloes, but things that might add more spice to the experience.’
    • ‘This title will first have caused painstaking inquiry into my past, the peccadillos and all.’
    • ‘And besides, other nations, such as the French, don't get so worked up about the peccadilloes of the famous.’
    misdemeanour, minor offence, petty offence, delinquency
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Late 16th century: from Spanish pecadillo, diminutive of pecado ‘sin’, from Latin peccare ‘to sin’.