crit·i·cize | \ˈkri-tə-ˌsīz \
criticized; criticizing

Definition of criticize 

intransitive verb

: to act as a critic

transitive verb

1 : to consider the merits and demerits of and judge accordingly : evaluate He asked me to criticize his drawings.

2 : to find fault with : point out the faults of His boss criticized him for his sloppy work.

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Other Words from criticize

criticizable \ˈkri-tə-ˌsī-zə-bəl \ adjective
criticizer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for criticize


blame, censure, condemn, denounce, fault, knock, pan, reprehend


extol (also extoll), laud, praise

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Choose the Right Synonym for criticize

criticize, reprehend, censure, reprobate, condemn, denounce mean to find fault with openly. criticize implies finding fault especially with methods or policies or intentions. criticized the police for using violence reprehend implies both criticism and severe rebuking. reprehends the self-centeredness of today's students censure carries a strong suggestion of authority and of reprimanding. a Senator formally censured by his peers reprobate implies strong disapproval or firm refusal to sanction. reprobated his son's unconventional lifestyle condemn usually suggests an unqualified and final unfavorable judgment. condemned the government's racial policies denounce adds to condemn the implication of a public declaration. a pastoral letter denouncing abortion

Examples of criticize in a Sentence

His boss criticized him for his sloppy work habits. The judge was widely criticized for his verdict. The editor criticized the author's work as trite. It seems as though all he ever does is criticize.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Previously, Scarlett's casting was heavily criticized by many, including trans actors. Emily Wang, Teen Vogue, "Scarlett Johansson Withdraws From "Rub and Tug" After Criticism of Her Casting as a Trans Man," 13 July 2018 The seven-member board came under fire after offering Mr. Higgins’s successor a $750,000 salary, which top Puerto Rican politicians criticized as excessive for a bankrupt utility. Andrew Scurria, WSJ, "Puerto Rico Utility Directors Resign, Alleging Political Interference," 12 July 2018 Public-lands advocates have criticized Trump’s pardon as a tacit approval of the occupation. Matt Pearce,, "Pardoned by Trump, Oregon ranchers ride home in style on Pence ally's private jet," 12 July 2018 Pretextual traffic stops, in which police pull someone over on the pretense of a minor infraction in order to investigate more serious wrongdoing, have long been criticized as a kind of legal racial profiling. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "Driving Without a Smartphone," 10 July 2018 Use of the program has been criticized by the American Civil Liberties Union, who feared the system can be used to violate civil liberties and civil rights to be used to target immigrants and political activists. Ryan Gillespie,, "Orlando police plan to extend test of Amazon facial-recognition software," 9 July 2018 Some on social media criticized the channel's activities as reckless and short-sighted. Joel Shannon, USA TODAY, "'High on Life': Adrenaline-fueled YouTube channel mourns after 3 die in waterfall accident," 7 July 2018 The separations have become a political disaster for the Trump administration, roundly criticized by members of Congress in both parties amid public outrage. Bloomberg, Fortune, "Immigrant Children Under 5 Will Be Returned to Parents by Next Week, U.S. Official Says," 5 July 2018 During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly criticized the rate of immigration under Obama as dangerous and unchecked. Abigail Hauslohner And Andrew Ba Tran,, "Trump is making inroads in reducing legal immigration," 3 July 2018

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

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First Known Use of criticize

1643, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for criticize

critic entry 1 + -ize

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Statistics for criticize

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for criticize

The first known use of criticize was in 1643

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More Definitions for criticize



English Language Learners Definition of criticize

: to express disapproval of (someone or something) : to talk about the problems or faults of (someone or something)

: to look at and make judgments about (something, such as a piece of writing or a work of art)


crit·i·cize | \ˈkri-tə-ˌsīz \
criticized; criticizing

Kids Definition of criticize

1 : to examine and judge

2 : to find fault with

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Comments on criticize

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not any or not one

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