examine

verb
ex·​am·​ine | \ ig-ˈza-mən How to pronounce examine (audio) \
examined; examining\ ig-​ˈzam-​niŋ How to pronounce examining (audio) , -​ˈza-​mə-​ \

Definition of examine

transitive verb

1a : to inspect closely
b : to test the condition of
c : to inquire into carefully : investigate
2a : to interrogate closely examine a prisoner
b : to test by questioning in order to determine progress, fitness, or knowledge

intransitive verb

: to make or give an examination

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from examine

examinable \ ig-​ˈza-​mə-​nə-​bəl How to pronounce examinable (audio) \ adjective
examiner \ ig-​ˈzam-​nər How to pronounce examiner (audio) , -​ˈza-​mə-​ \ noun

Synonyms for examine

Synonyms

catechize, grill, interrogate, pump, query, question, quiz, sweat [slang]

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for examine

scrutinize, scan, inspect, examine mean to look at or over. scrutinize stresses close attention to minute detail. scrutinized the hospital bill scan implies a surveying from point to point often suggesting a cursory overall observation. scanned the wine list inspect implies scrutinizing for errors or defects. inspected my credentials examine suggests a scrutiny in order to determine the nature, condition, or quality of a thing. examined the specimens

Examples of examine in a Sentence

An accountant has been hired to examine the company's books. The police examined the evidence carefully. You should have your eyes examined. He was examined by several doctors, who found nothing wrong with him.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

That shouldn't make the most logical explanation any less logical -- even if that means examining Zarif's tweet through the prisim of Iranian domestic affairs. Nic Robertson, CNN, "With Iran, sometimes the logical explanation is the correct one," 14 June 2019 Based at a top university, students delve into issues impacting the future of our world, and examine solutions offered by engineering, technology, journalism, and more. National Geographic, "Journalism and Multimedia High School Workshop at Nat Geo in Washington, D.C.," 12 June 2019 Using new techniques for chemical analysis, the study’s scientists examined residue and found evidence of THC, the compound that gives pot its high. Christina Larson, BostonGlobe.com, "Signs of ritual pot smoking found in ancient Chinese graves," 12 June 2019 There were other possible sources of income Schwab had that investigators could not examine during the probe that has dogged the five-term Republican congressman and his operations for more than a year. Ronald J. Hansen, azcentral, "'I hate David and I hate this job': Former Schweikert staffers describe unrest," 12 June 2019 The characters are now taking to the stars, as part of a story that continues exploring the politics of Superman’s home world, while also examining its place in the galaxy. Samantha Nelson, The Verge, "In season 2, Krypton keeps viewers guessing," 12 June 2019 The Courier Journal reported in 2017 that Microsoft was examining the city's use of its software in a piracy dispute related to whether employees used more software than was allotted over the years. Darcy Costello, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville is paying $664K for software compliance after a 2017 Microsoft audit," 12 June 2019 Lopez said doctors were examining Ortiz early Monday afternoon to determine whether his condition was sufficiently stable to travel. Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY, "Former Red Sox star David Ortiz expected to be transported to Boston after shooting," 10 June 2019 McShepard’s analysis breaks down local leadership into four tiers -- political, business, community and civic – and examines the impediments of each to developing and nurturing new talent. Leila Atassi, cleveland.com, "Influential policy think tank calls upon Cleveland to develop new generation of black leaders, inspire their collaboration, subvert the status quo," 8 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for examine

Middle English, from Anglo-French examiner, from Latin examinare, from examen

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about examine

Statistics for examine

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for examine

The first known use of examine was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for examine

examine

verb

English Language Learners Definition of examine

: to look at (something) closely and carefully in order to learn more about it, to find problems, etc.
: to test or look carefully at (something or someone) for signs of illness or injury
law : to question (someone) closely

examine

verb
ex·​am·​ine | \ ig-ˈza-mən How to pronounce examine (audio) \
examined; examining

Kids Definition of examine

1 : to look at or check carefully He had his eyes examined.
2 : to question closely The police examined a witness.

examine

verb
ex·​am·​ine | \ ig-ˈzam-ən How to pronounce examine (audio) \
examined; examining\ -​(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce examining (audio) \

Medical Definition of examine

transitive verb

: to inspect or test for evidence of disease or abnormality the doctor examined the young men and found them in perfect health

intransitive verb

: to make or give an examination the doctor will examine at the infirmary

Keep scrolling for more

examine

transitive verb
ex·​am·​ine
examined; examining

Legal Definition of examine

1 : to investigate or inspect closely examine the title — compare audit
2 : to question closely especially in a court proceeding — compare depose

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on examine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with examine

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for examine

Spanish Central: Translation of examine

Nglish: Translation of examine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of examine for Arabic Speakers

Comments on examine

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

WORD OF THE DAY

showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

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!