Part of speech: adjective
Origin: Latin, 14th century
Deserving of blame
Responsible for a crime
Examples of Culpable in a sentence
"The little boy’s mother knew he was culpable for eating the last cookie because of the crumbs on his mouth. "
"All the evidence proved she was culpable for the accident. "
Popularity Over Time
Culpable can be used in situations of blame and guilt, but it has a specific connotation. You could be found culpable for a crime, even if you didn’t directly commit it, because you could have contributed to the crime. When you are deserving of blame, or somehow responsible for negative actions, you are culpable.
Did you Know?
The word culpable has been through a few iterations to get to its modern spelling. In Middle English it was “coupable.” In French it was “cupable,” and then we go back to the Latin root, “culpabilis.” In Latin, “culpare” is the verb to blame, and “culpa” is the noun for guilt.