Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

suspect

play
adjective sus·pect \ˈsəs-ˌpekt, sə-ˈspekt\

Simple Definition of suspect

  • : not able to be trusted : causing feelings of doubt or suspicion

Full Definition of suspect

  1. 1 :  regarded or deserving to be regarded with suspicion :  suspected <investigates suspect employees>

  2. 2 :  doubtful, questionable <whose skills are suspect — Peter Vecsey>

Examples of suspect

  1. The room had a suspect odor.

  2. <since she was carrying no cash or credit cards, her claim to the store's detectives that she had intended to pay for the items was suspect>



Origin of suspect

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin suspectus, from past participle of suspicere


First Known Use: 14th century


2

suspect

play
noun sus·pect \ˈsəs-ˌpekt\

Simple Definition of suspect

  • : a person who is believed to be possibly guilty of committing a crime

  • : a thing that is thought of as a possible cause of something bad

Full Definition of suspect

  1. :  one that is suspected; especially :  a person suspected of a crime

Examples of suspect

  1. One suspect has been arrested.

  2. She is a possible suspect in connection with the kidnapping.

  3. The prime suspect for the food poisoning is the potato salad.



1591

First Known Use of suspect

1591


3

suspect

play
verb sus·pect \sə-ˈspekt\

Simple Definition of suspect

  • : to think that (someone) is possibly guilty of a crime or of doing something wrong

  • : to think that (something) is possibly the cause of something bad

  • : to think that (a crime) has possibly been committed

Full Definition of suspect

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to imagine (one) to be guilty or culpable on slight evidence or without proof <suspect him of giving false information>

  3. 2 :  to have doubts of :  distrust <suspects her motives>

  4. 3 :  to imagine to exist or be true, likely, or probable <I suspect he's right>

  5. intransitive verb
  6. :  to imagine something to be true or likely

Examples of suspect

  1. He's suspected in four burglaries.

  2. The police do not suspect murder in this case.

  3. The fire chief suspects arson.

  4. I suspect it will rain.

  5. Call the doctor immediately if you suspect you've been infected.

  6. The latest research confirms what scientists have long suspected.

  7. I suspect she's not who she says she is.

  8. We haven't done our homework. I suspected as much.

  9. I suspected his motives in giving me the money.

  10. I have reason to suspect her sincerity when she makes promises like that.



Origin of suspect

Middle English, from Latin suspectare, frequentative of suspicere to look up at, regard with awe, suspect, from sub-, sus- up, secretly + specere to look at — more at sub-, spy


First Known Use: 15th century




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up suspect? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

spindrift pince-nez duvet kittly-benders
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ