reck·​on | \ ˈre-kən How to pronounce reckon (audio) \
reckoned; reckoning\ ˈre-​kə-​niŋ How to pronounce reckon (audio) , ˈrek-​niŋ \

Definition of reckon

transitive verb

1a : count reckon the days till Christmas
b : estimate, compute reckon the height of a building
c : to determine by reference to a fixed basis the existence of the U.S. is reckoned from the Declaration of Independence
2 : to regard or think of as : consider
3 chiefly dialectal : think, suppose I reckon I've outlived my time— Ellen Glasgow

intransitive verb

1 : to settle accounts
2 : to make a calculation
3a : judge
b chiefly dialectal : suppose, think
4 : to accept something as certain : place reliance I reckon on your promise to help
reckon with
: to take into consideration
reckon without
: to fail to consider : ignore

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Examples of reckon in a Sentence

I reckon that we'll have to leave early. Do you reckon you'll be able to go to the grocery store after work? We'll have to leave early, I reckon. They reckoned that they would reach their destination by noon. Losses were reckoned to be over a million dollars.
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Recent Examples on the Web The women who crossed the pageant stage with Vanessa in September 1983 have had more than three decades to reckon with that night, that week, that year, the most momentous in Miss America history. Washington Post, 23 Aug. 2021 In that same period, there also have been a wave of seismic societal shifts as the pandemic’s inequitable tolls, combined with the uprisings for Black lives, force us to reckon with systemic disenfranchisement. Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2021 DaCosta hopes that her new Candyman will both provide big scares in theaters while also forcing audience goers to reckon with the impacts of displacement and gentrification. Andrew R. Chow, Time, 27 Aug. 2021 If the reparations order is approved, Cambridge would move closer to being the second community in Massachusetts to establish such a program to reckon with the legacy of slavery and racial discrimination., 26 Aug. 2021 Yes, us Normals have found a way to reckon with the ever-increasing gap between the haves and the have-nots. Sam Taggart, Vulture, 19 Aug. 2021 Condé Nast is far from the only media company that began to reckon with its own diversity issues last year. Kerry Flynn, CNN, 17 Aug. 2021 Despite its prominence in the media, the study of disinformation is still in the process of answering definitional questions and hasn’t begun to reckon with some basic epistemological issues. Joseph Bernstein, Harper's Magazine, 17 Aug. 2021 Monday’s speech, despite its glossing over of the intelligence failures, was an honest attempt to reckon with the magnitude of the disaster that accompanies the uniquely American folly of nation-building. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, 16 Aug. 2021

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for reckon

Middle English rekenen, from Old English -recenian (as in gerecenian to narrate); akin to Old English reccan

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Time Traveler for reckon

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

10 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reckon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for reckon



English Language Learners Definition of reckon

: to think or suppose (something) : to believe that (something) is true or possible
: to calculate or guess (an amount, number, value, etc.) : to have or form a general idea about (something)
: to think of (someone or something) as being something specified


reck·​on | \ ˈre-kən How to pronounce reckon (audio) \
reckoned; reckoning

Kids Definition of reckon

1 : to believe that something is true or possible I reckon we're lost.
2 : calculate sense 1 They reckon the distance to be a mile.
3 : to regard or think of as : consider She was reckoned among the leaders.

More from Merriam-Webster on reckon

Nglish: Translation of reckon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of reckon for Arabic Speakers


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