augury

noun

au·​gu·​ry ˈȯ-gyə-rē How to pronounce augury (audio)
-gə-
plural auguries
1
: divination from auspices (see auspice sense 3) or omens
Ancient augury involved the interpretation of the flight patterns of birds.
also : an instance of this
2
: omen, portent
" … the best augury of a man's success in his profession is that he thinks it the finest in the world."George Eliot

Examples of augury in a Sentence

a yearbook augury that of all the graduates, he would be the most likely to succeed some people believe that a broken mirror is an augury of seven years' bad luck
Recent Examples on the Web The auguries were not favorable for a Pétain acquittal. Robert O. Paxton, Harper's Magazine, 17 Dec. 2023 Advertisement Remarkably, Kushner’s augury of a world coming apart holds true three decades later, including his prognostications about the dangers of climate change and the radical partisanship of the judiciary. Peter Marks, Washington Post, 2 Apr. 2023 With this new investor, the augury for the cigar industry is good. Nicholas Foulkes, Robb Report, 15 Apr. 2023 Within its air of metropolitan disdain lurked an augury of England’s post-Brexit identity crisis, in which the country appears permanently torn between the deflating liberal dreams still harbored in the cities and the backlash fermenting in the provinces left behind. Henry Wismayer, Washington Post, 8 Sep. 2021 Her first food was fish skin, blackened and reeking of the sea—augury foreshadowing her fearlessness, her love of swimming, her appetites. Aria Beth Sloss, Bon Appétit, 22 Mar. 2022 As with all augury, there's room for interpretation. Matthew Askari, Car and Driver, 28 June 2022 During the past 14 years of drought, the Colorado River Delta has been a living augury of the Colorado River and the ever-expanding swell of Southwesterners who depend on it. The Editors, Outside Online, 23 Dec. 2014 As of Sunday, 55,000 of those ballots came from districts that Adams won — a far higher share than went to any other candidate, and a good augury for the current leader. Noah Millman, The Week, 29 June 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'augury.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English augurie, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French augorrye, augurrie, borrowed from Latin augurium "divination by an augur, art of divination, omen, portent," from augur augur entry 1 + -ium, suffix of function or state

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of augury was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near augury

Cite this Entry

“Augury.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/augury. Accessed 24 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

augury

noun
au·​gu·​ry ˈȯ-gyə-rē How to pronounce augury (audio)
-gə-
plural auguries
1
: predicting the future especially from omens
2
: a sign of the future : omen

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