doubt

verb
\ ˈdau̇t How to pronounce doubt (audio) \
doubted; doubting; doubts

Definition of doubt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to call into question the truth of : to be uncertain or in doubt about He doubts everyone's word.
2a : to lack confidence in : distrust … find myself doubting him even when I know that he is honest …— H. L. Mencken
b : to consider unlikely I doubt if I can go.
3 archaic
a : fear … I doubt I have been beguiled!— Sir Walter Scott
b : suspect

doubt

noun
plural doubts

Definition of doubt (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a lack of confidence : distrust has doubts about his abilities
b : an inclination not to believe or accept a claim met with doubt
2a : uncertainty of belief or opinion that often interferes with decision-making
b : a deliberate suspension of judgment
3 : a state of affairs giving rise to uncertainty, hesitation, or suspense The outcome is still in doubt.
no doubt

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from doubt

Verb

doubtable \ ˈdau̇-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce doubt (audio) \ adjective
doubter noun
doubtingly \ ˈdau̇-​tiŋ-​lē How to pronounce doubt (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for doubt

Noun

uncertainty, doubt, dubiety, skepticism, suspicion, mistrust mean lack of sureness about someone or something. uncertainty may range from a falling short of certainty to an almost complete lack of conviction or knowledge especially about an outcome or result. assumed the role of manager without hesitation or uncertainty doubt suggests both uncertainty and inability to make a decision. plagued by doubts as to what to do dubiety stresses a wavering between conclusions. felt some dubiety about its practicality skepticism implies unwillingness to believe without conclusive evidence. an economic forecast greeted with skepticism suspicion stresses lack of faith in the truth, reality, fairness, or reliability of something or someone. regarded the stranger with suspicion mistrust implies a genuine doubt based upon suspicion. had a great mistrust of doctors

Examples of doubt in a Sentence

Verb I have always doubted the existence of life on other planets. No one doubts that the mission will be a success. I seriously doubt my parents will let me go. “Do you think you can come tonight?” “I doubt it.” She doubted his ability to succeed. He said he could do it, but I couldn't help doubting him. Noun I still have moments of doubt. There can be little doubt that smoking is bad for your health. I had a nagging doubt in the back of my mind.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Others doubt that the recent Treasury market calm will last if the economy shows more signs of acceleration. WSJ, 4 June 2021 Some experts doubt herd immunity will be achievable for Covid-19, perhaps ever, due to vaccine hesitancy, emerging virus variants and a delay rolling vaccines out to children. Robert Hart, Forbes, 28 May 2021 The Biden administration wants to get 70% of adult Americans vaccinated by July 4, but has acknowledged the downward trend in vaccinations and the challenge to win over people who doubt the vaccine’s effectiveness or simply don’t want to get shots. Heather Hollingsworth And Todd Richmond, Anchorage Daily News, 9 May 2021 The Biden administration wants to get 70% of adult Americans vaccinated by July 4, but has acknowledged the downward trend in vaccinations and the challenge to win over people who doubt the vaccine's effectiveness or simply don't want to get shots. Heather Hollingsworth And Todd Richmond, Star Tribune, 8 May 2021 Yet, despite its mountains of documents and trove of testimony, there are some in this country who still doubt the official story. Philip Elliott, Time, 20 Apr. 2021 One doesn’t exactly fear for characters’ lives or doubt that both cases will be solved. Michael Ordoña, Los Angeles Times, 19 May 2021 Education officials doubt that a state mandate to lock up federal funding for the next three years will help schools spend money wisely. Emily Donaldson, Dallas News, 19 May 2021 Now, however, some royal experts doubt that trip will actually happen after all. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, 1 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There's no doubt that the Aerospace and Defense industry is strategic to the global economy. Mohamed Fawzy, Forbes, 17 June 2021 There is no doubt that there's a fracture in the family of former Michigan players. David Jesse, Detroit Free Press, 16 June 2021 There is no doubt that writer Andre De Toth, better known for his film noir scripts, had Johnny Ringo in mind as the model for his protagonist. Philip Martin, Arkansas Online, 13 June 2021 There was never any doubt that Jack would join the family business. Cheryl Hall, Dallas News, 13 June 2021 Alison Steele: There is no doubt in our minds what happened. Peter Van Sant, CBS News, 12 June 2021 There is no doubt in his mind that a city initiative to streamline permitting for outdoor dining has saved his business. BostonGlobe.com, 11 June 2021 There is no doubt who had the top performance in all the state meets, as Floriea was the star of the show, winning four individual events and leading Mentor to its first girls team state title. Joe Magill, cleveland, 10 June 2021 There is no doubt that his main specialty is getting horses ready to join the Kentucky Derby trail. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 4 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'doubt.' 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 doubt

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3a

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for doubt

Verb and Noun

Middle English douten, from Anglo-French duter, douter, from Latin dubitare to be in doubt; akin to Latin dubius dubious

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About doubt

Time Traveler for doubt

Time Traveler

The first known use of doubt was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for doubt

Last Updated

19 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Doubt.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/doubt. Accessed 25 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for doubt

doubt

verb

English Language Learners Definition of doubt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to be uncertain about (something) : to believe that (something) may not be true or is unlikely
: to have no confidence in (someone or something)

doubt

noun

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

: a feeling of being uncertain or unsure about something

doubt

verb
\ ˈdau̇t How to pronounce doubt (audio) \
doubted; doubting

Kids Definition of doubt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to be uncertain about I doubt he's right.
2 : to lack confidence in I doubted my own judgment.
3 : to consider unlikely I doubt I can go tonight.

doubt

noun

Kids Definition of doubt (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a feeling of being uncertain Their predicament filled her with doubt.
2 : a reason for disbelief There can be no doubt that you have a most unusual pig.— E. B. White, Charlotte's Web
3 : the condition of being undecided Our plans are now in doubt.
4 : a lack of trust I have my doubts about this explanation.

More from Merriam-Webster on doubt

Nglish: Translation of doubt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of doubt for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about doubt

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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