crit·​i·​cize | \ ˈkri-tə-ˌsīz How to pronounce criticize (audio) \
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 How to pronounce criticize (audio) \ adjective
criticizer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for criticize



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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 Cheney's sin had been to criticize Trump, link him to the attack on the Capitol and warn that a cult of personality had risen around him. Michael D'antonio, CNN, 31 May 2021 McCarthy's comments are a sign of the escalating tension between the two, as Cheney has continued to criticize former President Trump and his role in the January 6 attack on the Capitol while McCarthy has sought to downplay the event. Grace Segers, CBS News, 5 May 2021 Many in her own party scoff at her overtures to the GOP and criticize her for not playing hardball. Lisa Mascaro And Nicholas Riccardi, Star Tribune, 6 July 2021 Some view it as having a chilling effect on former officials who wish to write about their time working in government, particularly those who seek to criticize it. New York Times, 16 June 2021 Garland has also continued some Trump administration policies and case positions that drew condemnation on the left, prompting some Democrats to criticize him as overly cautious., 16 June 2021 Trump frequently turned to Twitter to unleash tirades against all three during his presidency, as well as against Schiff and Swalwell, members of the House Intelligence Committee who appeared often on CNN to criticize him. Washington Post, 15 June 2021 The right to criticize the government has always been central to the American story. New York Times, 19 May 2021 He has been criticized for a sluggish reaction to the pandemic and routinely lashes out at political opponents and journalists who criticize him — including several major U.S. newspapers. Noah Bierman, Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2021

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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Time Traveler for criticize

Time Traveler

The first known use of criticize was in 1643

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Statistics for criticize

Last Updated

23 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Criticize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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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 How to pronounce criticize (audio) \
criticized; criticizing

Kids Definition of criticize

1 : to examine and judge
2 : to find fault with

More from Merriam-Webster on criticize

Nglish: Translation of criticize for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of criticize for Arabic Speakers


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