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verb \ˈjəj\

Simple Definition of judge

  • : to form an opinion about (something or someone) after careful thought

  • : to regard (someone) as either good or bad

  • law : to make an official decision about (a legal case)

Full Definition of judge


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to form an opinion about through careful weighing of evidence and testing of premises

  3. 2 :  to sit in judgment on :  try

  4. 3 :  to determine or pronounce after inquiry and deliberation

  5. 4 :  govern, rule —used of a Hebrew tribal leader

  6. 5 :  to form an estimate or evaluation of; especially :  to form a negative opinion about <shouldn't judge him because of his accent>

  7. 6 :  to hold as an opinion :  guess, think <I judge she knew what she was doing>

  8. intransitive verb
  9. 1 :  to form an opinion

  10. 2 :  to decide as a judge

judg·er noun

Examples of judge

  1. You should not judge people by their appearance.

  2. He was trying to judge the strength of his opponent.

  3. We should do whatever we judge to be the right thing.

  4. Who are you to judge me?

  5. He feels that they have judged him unfairly.

  6. Don't judge her too severely.

  7. The jury will be asked to judge the defendant's guilt.

  8. If you are accused of a crime you have the right to be judged by a jury of your peers.

Origin of judge

Middle English juggen, from Anglo-French juger, from Latin judicare, from judic-, judex judge, from jus right, law + dicere to decide, say — more at just, diction

First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of judge

infer, deduce, conclude, judge, gather mean to arrive at a mental conclusion. infer implies arriving at a conclusion by reasoning from evidence; if the evidence is slight, the term comes close to surmise <from that remark, I inferred that they knew each other>. deduce often adds to infer the special implication of drawing a particular inference from a generalization <denied we could deduce anything important from human mortality>. conclude implies arriving at a necessary inference at the end of a chain of reasoning <concluded that only the accused could be guilty>. judge stresses a weighing of the evidence on which a conclusion is based <judge people by their actions>. gather suggests an intuitive forming of a conclusion from implications <gathered their desire to be alone without a word>.

Sir Thomas More is the first writer known to have used both infer and imply in their approved senses (1528). He is also the first to have used infer in a sense close in meaning to imply (1533). Both of these uses of infer coexisted without comment until some time around the end of World War I. Since then, senses 3 and 4 of infer have been frequently condemned as an undesirable blurring of a useful distinction. The actual blurring has been done by the commentators. Sense 3, descended from More's use of 1533, does not occur with a personal subject. When objections arose, they were to a use with a personal subject (now sense 4). Since dictionaries did not recognize this use specifically, the objectors assumed that sense 3 was the one they found illogical, even though it had been in respectable use for four centuries. The actual usage condemned was a spoken one never used in logical discourse. At present sense 4 is found in print chiefly in letters to the editor and other informal prose, not in serious intellectual writing. The controversy over sense 4 has apparently reduced the frequency of use of sense 3.

Rhymes with judge




Simple Definition of judge

  • law : a person who has the power to make decisions on cases brought before a court of law

  • : a person who decides the winner in a contest or competition

  • : a person who makes a decision or judgment

Full Definition of judge

  1. :  one who judges: as a :  a public official authorized to decide questions brought before a court b often capitalized :  a tribal hero exercising leadership among the Hebrews after the death of Joshua c :  one appointed to decide in a contest or competition :  umpire d :  one who gives an authoritative opinion e :  critic

judge·ship play \-ˌship\ noun

Examples of judge

  1. She's one of the strictest judges in the state.

  2. He served as a judge at the baking contest.

  3. I don't think we should trust her. Let me be the judge of that.

  4. She is a good judge of character.

Origin of judge

Middle English juge, from Anglo-French, from Latin judex

First Known Use: 14th century

Seen and Heard

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February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

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