cri·​tique | \ krə-ˈtēk How to pronounce critique (audio) , kri-\

Definition of critique

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an act of criticizing especially : a critical (see critical sense 1c) estimate or discussion a critique of the poet's work an honest critique of her art


critiqued; critiquing

Definition of critique (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to examine critically : review critique the plan

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for critique

Synonyms: Noun

criticism, examen, notice, review

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Did You Know?


Critique is an alteration of an archaic word that referred generally to criticism. Critique itself dates to the early 18th century and originally referred to a piece of writing that criticized a literary or artistic work. The words criticism, critique, and review overlap in meaning. Criticism usually means "the act of criticizing" or a "remark or comment that expresses disapproval," but it can also refer to the activity of making judgments about the qualities of books, movies, etc. (as in "literary criticism").Critique is a somewhat formal word that typically refers to a careful judgment in which someone gives an opinion about something. Review can refer to an essay analyzing a literary or artistic work, but can also sometimes imply a more casual or personal opinion.

Examples of critique in a Sentence


She wrote a radical critique of the philosopher's early essays. They gave a fair and honest critique of her art.


The class convened to critique the student's latest painting.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Over the years, Barbie has been the subject of feminist critique, not just for her whiteness, but also for her impossible-to-reproduce-in-real-life proportions. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "Barbie Will Be Honored at This Year’s CFDA Awards," 16 May 2019 Another critique comes from market participants such as former Fed governor Kevin Warsh who believe the Fed is ignoring troubling signals from the financial markets. Greg Ip, WSJ, "Trump’s Volatility Only Adds to Stock-Market Selling Pressure," 26 Dec. 2018 That critique had prompted Trump to endorse the congressman’s opponent, who won the race. Washington Post, "Trump lends support to McMaster in South Carolina runoff," 25 June 2018 Conservatives’ mutually contradictory critiques of Barack Obama’s immigration record suggest that this simply isn’t the case. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump: Obama Was for ‘Open Borders’ – Also, His Immigration Policies Were the Same As Mine," 25 June 2018 Outside Germany, many critiques of the Sonderweg thesis came from the left. Naomi Fry, The New Yorker, "How American Racism Influenced Hitler," 23 Apr. 2018 Republican senators have been more vocal about criticizing the president than their House counterparts, but those critiques still come from only a minority of the GOP majority. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "How Not to Remove a President," 16 Apr. 2018 Bringing up popular critiques of microchip implants often led to dead ends. Yael Grauer, Ars Technica, "A practical guide to microchip implants," 3 Jan. 2018 What this means for you: To its credit, Microsoft has addressed several of the shortcomings my colleague Jared Newman addressed in his 2017 critique of To-Do’s shortcomings. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Wunderlist's death by a thousand cuts continues as Microsoft axes Cortana integration," 29 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The competition show will once again aim to find the best home cook out there through a series of grueling challenges, all while some of the biggest names in the culinary biz critique their every move. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'MasterChef' Season 10 Has Some Huge Changes in Store, Says Gordon Ramsay," 22 May 2019 Modern Markets Initiative said in a three-page letter critiquing the study that by the time someone sees better prices elsewhere, the opportunity to trade at those prices is already gone. Cezary Podkul, WSJ, "Brief Price Gaps in Stocks Cost Investors $2 Billion a Year," 14 Feb. 2019 Jaylyn Abergas, a transgender actor who plays one of the leads in the production, remembers some of the criticisms about the play at an early question-and-answer session, critiques about trans misogyny and trans aggression. Ryan Kost, San Francisco Chronicle, "A little-known, vital moment in LGBT history: SF diner riot lives again onstage," 26 Feb. 2018 Todd Haley will help The Browns are eager to have new offensive coordinator Todd Haley critique the college and pro QBs. Doug Lesmerises,, "Is it OK for Browns fans to disagree with Joe Thomas? Podcast," 27 Jan. 2018 This particular sentiment is widely held by Orthodox Jews: critiquing Christians’ theology isn’t our business, and God only knows what they’d make of ours. Abigail Shrier, WSJ, "The New Jewish-Christian Amity," 7 Sep. 2018 The 'Psych' and 'West Wing' alum critiques the bail bond industry in a PSA for the nonprofit NextGen America. Rebecca Sun, The Hollywood Reporter, "Dulé Hill on Bail Reform: "There Has to Be a More Equitable Process" (Exclusive Video)," 18 June 2018 The jokes aimed at Sanders critiqued her job performance, her appearance and even her Southern roots. Elizabeth Zwirz, Fox News, "Netflix scraps Michelle Wolf series: reports," 17 Aug. 2018 What may be instantly recognizable to modern audiences is the depiction of the burden that falls on a woman in charge, whose success is suspect and whose actions are constantly critiqued. T.l. Stanley,, "'Game of Thrones' star Natalie Dormer heads Amazon's twisty mystery 'Picnic At Hanging Rock'," 24 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of critique


1653, in the meaning defined above


1751, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for critique


borrowed from French, borrowed from Latin critica "evaluation of literary works," borrowed from Greek kritikḗ noun derivative from feminine of kritikós "discerning, capable of judging" — more at critic entry 1


derivative of critique entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about critique

Listen to Our Podcast about critique

Statistics for critique

Last Updated

4 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for critique

The first known use of critique was in 1653

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for critique



English Language Learners Definition of critique

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a careful judgment in which you give your opinion about the good and bad parts of something (such as a piece of writing or a work of art)



English Language Learners Definition of critique (Entry 2 of 2)

: to express your opinion about the good and bad parts of (something) : to give a critique of (something)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on critique

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with critique

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for critique

Spanish Central: Translation of critique

Nglish: Translation of critique for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of critique for Arabic Speakers

Comments on critique

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


showing great care, attention, and effort

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!