From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishblameblame1 /bleɪm/ ●●● S2 W3 verb [transitive] 1 BLAMEto say or think that someone or something is responsible for something bad Don’t blame me – it’s not my fault. I blame his mother. She does everything for him.blame somebody/something for something Marie still blames herself for Patrick’s death. The report blames poor safety standards for the accident. The decision to increase interest rates was widely blamed (=blamed by many people) for the crisis.blame something on somebody/something One of the computers is broken and she’s blaming it on me. The crash was blamed on pilot error.2 → somebody/something is to blame (for something)3 → I don’t blame you/you can hardly blame him etc4 → don’t blame me5 → somebody only has himself/herself to blameTHESAURUSblame verb [transitive] to say or think that someone or something is responsible for something bad that has happenedDemocrats have blamed Republicans for the failure to reach an agreement.Police blamed bad weather for a series of accidents on the roads.For many years I blamed myself for her death.They blamed the failure of the business on the economic downturn.put/place/lay the blame on somebody/something to say who or what you think is responsible for something bad that has happened, often unfairly or wronglyDon’t try to put the blame on me!Subsequent investigations placed the blame squarely on city officials.Farmers have laid the blame for their problems entirely on EU policies.say it’s somebody’s fault especially spoken to say that someone is responsible for something bad that has happenedAre you saying it’s my fault that we lost the game?hold somebody responsible to say that someone is responsible for something bad that has happened, because it was their duty to prevent it from happeningHe was held personally responsible for the failure of the project.take the rap informal (also carry the can British English informal) to be blamed and punished for something that you did not do, or that someone else is also responsible forHe expects his wife to take the rap for him.Alan’s colleagues decided to let him carry the can. → See Verb table
Examples from the Corpusblame• Here again, the vagaries of Government policy are at least partly to blame.• It wasn't my character, but circumstances which were to blame.• Peres is to be blamed for nothing.• The angry Texan blamed his dance partner for tripping him.• It's your idea - don't blame me if it doesn't work.• For many years I blamed myself for her death.• But anomalies like these should not be blamed on linguistics, higher mathematics or the new history.• Democrats have blamed Republicans for the failure to reach an agreement.• Everyone wants to blame the referees when their team loses.• Some of the women blamed their husbands' violence on drinking.• Apple blamed weaker-than-expected demand and pricing pressures.• You had to talk to those dear old folk at the Empress and I don't blame you.blame somebody/something for something• I used to blame my parents for messing up my life.• Dougan blamed the economy for weak Christmas sales.blameblame2 ●●● S3 W2 noun [uncountable] BLAMEresponsibility for a mistake or for something badblame for Do you accept any blame for what happened? I always get the blame (=am blamed) for his mistakes! She stole the money but she’s trying to put the blame on (=blame) me.COLLOCATIONSverbsget the blame (=be blamed)Sam knew that if something went wrong, he’d get the blame.take/accept/shoulder the blame (=say that something is your fault)No one was prepared to take the blame for the disaster.Parents must shoulder the blame if their kids behave badly.put/pin the blame on somebody (also lay/place the blame on somebody written) (=blame someone, especially when it is not their fault)Don’t try to put the blame on me.Everyone laid the blame for the crisis on the government.shift the blame (onto somebody) (=blame someone else for something you did)She always tried to shift the blame onto her brother.apportion/assign blame formal (=find someone to blame for something)He seemed to want to apportion blame for her death.share the blameHe admitted he shared the blame for their World Cup defeat.the blame lies with somebody (=used to say that someone is responsible for something bad)In this case, the blame lay with the police.phrasesplace the blame squarely/firmly on somebody (=blame someone in a very definite way)A military investigation placed the blame squarely on city officials.point the finger of blame at somebody (=say that someone is responsible for something bad)I couldn’t believe it when they started pointing the finger of blame at me.
Examples from the Corpusblame• The city was rife with forlorn single women, and there was plenty of blame to go around.• But listening to Ferrell and Armstrong, it sounded like there was plenty of blame to go around.• If we allow that logic then, the time must be approaching that the guy taking credit must now accept the blame.• Taylor deserves a dollop of the blame.• Do not place the blame anywhere but on yourself, because you alone have chosen that path.• Pitta's critics concede that many quarters share the blame for Sao Paulo's afflictions.• Hence, she is considered to share the blame.blame for• Much of the blame for homelessness should go on the state's welfare system.Origin blame1 (1100-1200) Old French blamer, from Late Latin blasphemare; → BLASPHEME