crit·​i·​cism | \ ˈkri-tə-ˌsi-zəm How to pronounce criticism (audio) \

Definition of criticism

1a : the act of criticizing usually unfavorably seeking encouragement rather than criticism
b : a critical observation or remark an unfair criticism had a minor criticism of the design
c : critique
2 : the art of evaluating or analyzing works of art or literature also : writings expressing such evaluation or analysis an anthology of literary criticism
3 : the scientific investigation of literary documents (such as the Bible) in regard to such matters as origin, text, composition, or history

Synonyms for criticism


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Examples of criticism in a Sentence

There was much public criticism directed at the senator. In this job you need to be able to take criticism. I asked my sister for some constructive criticism of my essay before I tried to revise it. I had one minor criticism about her design.
Recent Examples on the Web Jack Grealish and Son Heung-min, two of the English Premier League's most high-profile players, have been facing growing criticism for their failure to score this season. Steve Douglas, ajc, 17 Sep. 2022 The questions and criticism from Xi and Modi are just the latest pressure on the Russian president. Mary Ilyushina,, 16 Sep. 2022 Right model LaNisha Cole, the Masked Singer host, 41, addressed criticism of his growing family. Angela Andaloro, Peoplemag, 15 Sep. 2022 The shift from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake protocols is expected to cut carbon emissions tied to Ethereum mining by about 99%, addressing a key criticism of the blockchain. Jacob Carpenter, Fortune, 15 Sep. 2022 Now, the Institute for the Study of War said the admission in Kharkiv is part of an effort to deflect criticism for such a devastating failure away from Russian President Vladimir Putin and onto defense officials. John Bacon, USA TODAY, 15 Sep. 2022 The former America’s Got Talent host has definitely experienced his fair share of jokes made at his expense, as well as outright criticism for having fathered so many children with several different women in such a short amount of time. Hannah Dailey, Billboard, 15 Sep. 2022 Lindsey Scharold has over 5 years of professional writing experience, from copywriting and technical writing to journalism and cultural criticism. Lindsey Scharold, Better Homes & Gardens, 14 Sep. 2022 Numerous posts, from criticism of the Chinese government to breastfeeding photos, have been pulled, sparking backlash and condemnation. Tatiana Siegel, Rolling Stone, 14 Sep. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'criticism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of criticism

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for criticism

critic entry 1 + -ism

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Time Traveler for criticism

Time Traveler

The first known use of criticism was in 1606

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Statistics for criticism

Last Updated

20 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Criticism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for criticism


crit·​i·​cism | \ ˈkri-tə-ˌsi-zəm How to pronounce criticism (audio) \

Kids Definition of criticism

1 : the act of finding fault His criticism of her decision made her stop and rethink the plan.
2 : a remark that expresses disapproval I had only one criticism about his work.
3 : a careful judgment or review especially by a person whose job is to judge the value, worth, beauty, or quality of something

More from Merriam-Webster on criticism

Nglish: Translation of criticism for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of criticism for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about criticism


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