Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defines “alibi” as 1. evidence that proves that a person was in another place at the time of a crime and so could not have committed it. 2. an excuse for sth that you have done wrong.

Is there an opposite, single word (not like ‘evidence of presence’) to “alibi” denoting evidence that "positively" proves that a person was in the place at the time of an event taking place regardress whether it's associated with or not? For instance, I want to prove that I was "there" at a dinner party last night, not at another or other places, or I want to show off a picture taken at a dinner show together with movie stars.

If there is no opposite word, or antonym to "alibi," it's fine.

P.S. I checked the list of past ‘Is there single word for xxx” questions. I didn’t find the same question. However if there is, I’m willing to delete this question.

  • 2
    Why do you think a word like that would have an opposite? Generally only adjectives have opposites. Mar 3, 2015 at 8:28
  • 3
    Are you looking for something like red-handedness? dictionary.reference.com/browse/red-handedness
    – skymningen
    Mar 3, 2015 at 8:32
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    @curiousdanni. Antonym isn't all adjectives. Mar 3, 2015 at 8:47
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    Wouldn't alibi work both ways? Either to confirm that you were or were not at the dinner party?
    – user66974
    Mar 3, 2015 at 8:55
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    The commonness of the expression "We can tie (or something or someone ties) him (or her) to the scene of the crime" suggests to me that there is probably no one-word equivalent. Mar 3, 2015 at 10:29

7 Answers 7


evidence or argument establishing or helping to establish a fact or the truth of a statement.

Here's the proof (you've been asking for) that I was at a dinner party last night.

This answers the OP example: For instance, I want to prove that I was "there" at a dinner party last night, not at another or other places, or I want to show off a picture taken at a dinner show together with movie stars..

While I agree with Josh61 that proof is not the antonym for alibi, you wouldn't say about a photo which testifies your presence at a dinner party as: "This is my alibi..."

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    Proof/evidence are not univocal..that may prove or disprove something, like alibi. The are more synonyms than antonyms IMO.
    – user66974
    Mar 3, 2015 at 9:34
  • It is a tricky issue!!!
    – user66974
    Mar 3, 2015 at 12:09
  • Alibi has a ' you have something to hide' connotation that is not present in your example, either as a synonym or antonym. That why you wouldn'd say ' this photo is my alibi'.
    – user66974
    Mar 3, 2015 at 12:50
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    @JimReynolds I know that, I even said so in the answer but proof fits the OP's request. You wouldn't say to someone "Do want the smoking gun that I danced with Anne Hathaway last night?" You'd say: proof or evidence. Give me the word that fits the OP's example from the answers that have been posted so far.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Mar 3, 2015 at 15:16
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    OK. I see after reading more carefully, that you did say that. My mistake! I also see, after reading again and more carefully, that the OP's question is, in my opinion, confused! He first gives quite a simple definition, and he asks for an antonym, but the language in the second paragraph is actually confused and unclear. Mar 3, 2015 at 15:33

If an alibi is "exculpatory evidence", the its opposite would be "damning evidence"; the English idiom which more concisely communicates the idea of damning evidence is smoking gun.

From Wikipedia, for example:

The term "smoking gun" was originally, and is still primarily, a reference to an object or fact that serves as conclusive evidence of a crime or similar act. In addition to this, its meaning has evolved in uses completely unrelated to criminal activity: for example, scientific evidence that is highly suggestive in favor of a particular hypothesis is sometimes called smoking gun evidence. Its name originally came from the idea of finding a smoking (i.e., very recently fired) gun on the person of a suspect wanted for shooting someone, which in that situation would be nearly unshakable proof of having committed the crime. A piece of evidence that falls just short of being conclusive is sometimes referred to as a "smoldering gun."

So the power of idiom is derived from its clear imagery.

  • 1
    But an alibi is a specific type of exculpatory evidence, relating to establishment of location and period. A smoking gun is one type of incriminating evidence, but so is, say, a fingerprint. Is fingerprint another antonym for alibi? No, so being incriminating evidence doesn't = being an opposite of alibi. Mar 3, 2015 at 12:03
  • An alibi is definitive (of innocence). A 'smoking gun' is convincing but still questionable (but this may still be the best alternative).
    – Mitch
    Mar 3, 2015 at 13:12
  • @Mitch Read the first and last bolded passages from the Wikipedia article.
    – Dan Bron
    Mar 3, 2015 at 13:13

The opposite of alibi, if there is one, surely is in flagrante delicto, meaning in the very act of wrongdoing (especially in an act of sexual misconduct). There are difficulties with this since, as you observe, alibi is a noun and this expression is adverbial.

But it would appear to me that proof of your attendance at the dinner party (as someone observed) constitutes an alibi. The worst-case opposite of that would have been to have been caught in flagrante delicto.

  • But one can be proven to have been somewhere at an opportune time without being in flagrante delicato, delicious a term as it is. Mar 3, 2015 at 10:32

Well, an alibi is said to be "exculpatory" (taking away blame), so if "culpatory" is a word, it would mean "attaching blame to".

Other adjectives include "damning" or "incriminating" (evidence), which helps to establish "culpability".

If the perpetrator was caught in the act, he is said to have been "caught red-handed". The cops could be said to "have the goods on him". If the evidence is strong, prosecuting attorney has an "ironclad case" or an "open-and-shut case" against him. The evidence might be said to be "incontrovertible" (cannot be disproved).

A related term is "corpus delicti", which refers to proving that a crime has been committed (you can't be proven guilty of a crime unless prosecutors can establish that a crime has been committed.)

But none of these is an actual one-word noun opposite of "alibi".


What you are seeking is a single-word noun that means "proof or evidence of presence".

I'm pretty sure that no such word exists in English.

However, given that alibi is a Latin word, perhaps we can at least invent a corresponding Latin expression that means "indication of presence".

Accordingly, I propose the term indicium praesentiae. Admittedly, this isn't the type of expression most people would want to drop into a casual conversation, but I can see it having its uses in the courtroom, medicine or other specialized contexts.


When you've been somewhere, you will have left a trace there. Unlike alibi, this is not something that you've actually got, but it is something that you inevitably leave wherever you go.

From Merriam-Webster:

trace (n.)
a : a mark or line left by something that has passed; also : footprint
b : a path, trail, or road made by the passage of animals, people, or vehicles
a : a sign or evidence of some past thing : vestige
a : a minute and often barely detectable amount or indication : a trace of a smile

This word applies at every level, from forensic (detectable physical marks of your presence) to psychological (people will have noticed and remembered you).


Well, sir, I am afraid I could not find a single word.

However if you want to emphasize that you really were there, " for instance, I want to prove that I was "there" at a dinner party last night, not at another or other places, or I want to show off a picture taken at a dinnaer show together with movie stars" as you said, being there is not enough.

So let me suggest Julius Caesar's famous quote: Veni, Vidi, Vici which means 'I came, I saw, I conquered (http://ancienthistory.about.com/).

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