know better


: to be smart or sensible enough not to do something
You walked home alone? Don't you know better (than that)?
She'll know better than to trust them again.
There's no excuse for his behavior. He's old enough to know better.
Don't blame him. He's just a child and he doesn't know (any) better.
: to know or understand the truth about something
She tried to tell me that it wasn't her fault, but I know better.
: to know or understand more than other people
You can't tell him what to do. He always thinks that he knows better.

Examples of know better in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In a lot of ways, Angie does know better than Tessa, which is a tough pill for Tessa to swallow. Michael Schaub, Orange County Register, 3 May 2024 So, while many people blame the Jews for the crucifixion of Jesus, and use this as a basis for their antisemitism, true believers know better. Bea L. Hines, Miami Herald, 29 Mar. 2024 This risk is higher among people who suffer from mental illness and children who don't know better. Binghui Huang, The Indianapolis Star, 13 Mar. 2024 Like Robinson Crusoe, even locals who should know better view this other island as a blank slate for exile or utopia. Carina Del Valle Schorske, New York Times, 20 Mar. 2024 The individuals in this room know better than anyone just how much time, hard work and heart goes into creating the magic that takes place when an artist takes the stage with a room full of fans. Jessica Nicholson, Billboard, 13 Feb. 2024 Even those in higher ed know better than to assume the glitz of a four-year or masters degree will sway employers for long. Jane Thier, Fortune, 26 Jan. 2024 Or did the bees know better than to waste their time trying to penetrate the presumably granite-like epidermis of the Crank and Expendables star? Clark Collis,, 11 Jan. 2024 But that’s actually what’s floating around out there on the social network hellscapes, nudged along by a few adults who really should know better (Vivek Ramaswamy). James Hibberd, The Hollywood Reporter, 30 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'know better.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Dictionary Entries Near know better

Cite this Entry

“Know better.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

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