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Accuse vs Charge vs Indict vs Impeach

Accuse, charge, indict, impeach all mean to declare a person guilty of a fault or offense.

What’s the difference?

Accuse implies a direct, personal declaration.

  • He was accusing my mom of having an affair with another man.

Charge usually implies a formal declaration of a serious offense.

  • He was charged with murder.

Indict is usually used in a legal context and implies a formal consideration of evidence prior to a trial.

  • He was later indicted on corruption charges.

Impeach technically refers to a formal charge of malfeasance in office on the part of a public official.

  • The Congress decided to impeach the President.