noun (C, U)
1 MIND the part of your mind that tells you whether what you are doing is morally right or wrong: Be guided by your conscience. | a social conscience (=a moral sense of how society should be) | a guilty/bad conscience (=feel guilty because you have done something wrong): It was his guilty conscience that made him offer to help. | a clear conscience (=a feeling that you have done nothing wrong): Well at least I can face them all with a clear conscience. | a twinge/pang of conscience (=guilty feeling): Ian felt a pang of conscience at having misjudged her. | have no conscience (about sth) (=not feel guilty about something): They've no conscience at all about cheating. | a prisoner of conscience (=someone who is in prison because of their political or religious beliefs) | a matter of conscience (=something that you must make a moral judgment about): I can't tell you what to do - it's a matter of conscience.
2 on your conscience if you have something on your conscience it makes you feel guilty: If anything happens to her I'll always have it on my conscience.
3 prick your conscience if an action or event pricks your conscience, it makes you feel guilty: The dog's sad look pricked her conscience and she took him home.
4 clear your conscience to make yourself stop feeling guilty by telling someone about what you did wrong: Terry decided to clear his conscience and confess.
5 in all conscience formal if you cannot in all conscience do something, you cannot do it because you think it is wrong: I couldn't in all conscience tell him that his job was safe.
6 in good conscience if you do something in good conscience, you do it because you think it is the right thing to do: statements made in good conscience

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Conscience — conscience …   Philosophy dictionary

  • CONSCIENCE — Le mot latin conscientia est naturellement décomposé en «cum scientia». Cette étymologie suggère non seulement la connaissance de l’objet par le sujet, mais que cet objet fait toujours référence au sujet lui même. Le terme allemand Bewusstsein… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Conscience — • The individual, as in him customary rules acquire ethical character by the recognition of distinct principles and ideals, all tending to a final unity or goal, which for the mere evolutionist is left very indeterminate, but for the Christian… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • conscience — CONSCIENCE. s. f. Lumière intérieure, sentiment intérieur par lequel l homme se rend témoignage à luimême du bien et du mal qu il fait. Conscience timorée. Conscience délicate. Conscience scrupuleuse. Conscience tendre. Bonne conscience.… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • conscience — Conscience. s. f. Lumiere interieure, sentiment interieur, par lequel l homme se rend tesmoignage à luy mesme du bien & du mal qu il fait. Conscience honorée conscience delicate. conscience scrupuleuse. conscience tendre. bonne conscience.… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • conscience — Conscience, Dire en sa conscience, Bona fide dicere. A ma conscience, Selon ce que je pense, Ex animi sententia. Homme de bonne conscience, Religiosus. Loyauté et bonne conscience, Religio et fides, B. Une exemplaire d une droite et bonne… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • Conscience — Con science, n. [F. conscience, fr. L. conscientia, fr. consciens, p. pr. of conscire to know, to be conscious; con + scire to know. See {Science}.] 1. Knowledge of one s own thoughts or actions; consciousness. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] The sweetest… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • conscience — con·science adj: exempting persons whose religious beliefs forbid compliance conscience laws, which allow refuse to participate in abortions W. J. Curran Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • CONSCIENCE (H.) — CONSCIENCE HENRI (1812 1883) Écrivain flamand. Épris de son pays, Conscience résolut d’écrire en une langue que la bourgeoisie francophone de l’époque considérait comme un patois destiné au vulgaire. Le romantisme nationaliste lui inspira Le Lion …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • conscience — early 13c., from O.Fr. conscience conscience, innermost thoughts, desires, intentions; feelings (12c.), from L. conscientia knowledge within oneself, sense of right, a moral sense, from conscientem (nom. consciens), prp. of conscire be (mutually) …   Etymology dictionary

  • conscience — [kän′shəns] n. [OFr < L conscientia, consciousness, moral sense < prp. of conscire < com , with + scire, to know (see SCIENCE): replacing ME inwit, knowledge within] 1. a knowledge or sense of right and wrong, with an urge to do right;… …   English World dictionary

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