\ ō-ˈpīn How to pronounce opine (audio) \
opined; opining

Definition of opine

intransitive verb

: to express opinions You may opine about anything you want.

transitive verb

: to state as an opinion opined that the nominee was not fit to serve on the Supreme Court

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Did You Know?

Opine has been around since the 15th century, and while it certainly is not a rare word today, not everyone is inclined to take it seriously. Commentators have described it as a stilted word, appropriate only in facetious use - and it does have an undeniable tendency to turn up in humorous writing. Recent evidence, however, suggests that it is being used in perfectly respectable contexts more often. It typically serves to emphasize that the opinion being reported is just that - an opinion. The etymology of opine is perfectly respectable, too. The term derives from the Middle French opiner ("to express one's opinion") and the Latin opinari, meaning "to have an opinion or "to think."

Examples of opine in a Sentence

Many people opine that the content of Web pages should be better regulated. You can opine about any subject you like.
Recent Examples on the Web This isn't the first time the former governor has opined about the virus, which has killed more than 30 people in the U.S. and has been confirmed in at least 38 states. Phillip M. Bailey, The Courier-Journal, "Former Gov. Matt Bevin mocks 'Chicken Little' concerns over coronavirus," 11 Mar. 2020 Journalists have kept busy opining about what a shift toward remote work might look like, while companies that peddle remote-access technologies watch hungrily. Kim Kelly, Teen Vogue, "Coronavirus Will Be the Hardest for Gig and Service Workers in the U.S.," 10 Mar. 2020 The judge ruled that Armstrong could tell the jury in general about what kinds of physical sensations a police officer might experience when confronting a deadly threat, but could not opine about the reasonableness of Guyger's actions. Erin Donaghue, CBS News, "Former Dallas cop who shot neighbor: "I was scared he was going to kill me"," 27 Sep. 2019 Educators of public and private schools, legal scholars, parents, religious organizations, the federal government, think tanks, states, and politicians are among those who have opined. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "A major church and state case ignites ungodly amounts of debate at US Supreme Court," 21 Jan. 2020 Critics have opined that the overall style of the show is more approachable than the original. Rod Stafford Hagwood, sun-sentinel.com, "Broadway phenomenon ‘Les Miserables’ comes to Fort Lauderdale’s Broward Center," 3 Oct. 2019 Staff also opined that responses to a citizenship question might not be accurate. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Who Runs the Census?," 24 Jan. 2019 And opining on her budgeting is frankly none of your husband's business. Annie Lane, oregonlive, "Dear Annie: Husband turns against brother- and sister-in-law after they move nearby," 9 Apr. 2020 Music The 10 best John Prine songs Music The 10 best John Prine songs Former Times staffer Robert Hilburn opines that from his debut album in 1971, John Prine, who recently died, was one of the greatest songwriters America has ever produced. Jewly Hight, Los Angeles Times, "Is country music finally ready for Mickey Guyton?," 9 Apr. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for opine

Middle English opinen "to hold an opinion, think (that something is the case)," borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French opiner "to express one's view, be of the opinion (that)," borrowed from Latin opīnārī "to hold as an opinion, think, have in mind," of obscure origin

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Time Traveler for opine

Time Traveler

The first known use of opine was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

25 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Opine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/opine. Accessed 28 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for opine


How to pronounce opine (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of opine

formal : to express an opinion about something

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More from Merriam-Webster on opine

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for opine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with opine

Spanish Central: Translation of opine

Britannica English: Translation of opine for Arabic Speakers

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