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 Economists reckon around 925,000 workers filed for benefits, holding steady after claims jumped at the start of the year. Joe Wallace, WSJ, "Paccar, United, Travelers: What to Watch When the Stock Market Opens Today," 21 Jan. 2021 Most scouts reckon that about a third of those could easily be replaced with someone in the G League or overseas. Connor Letourneau,, "How two unheralded college players found a home in Warriors’ rotation," 2 Jan. 2021 Jacobs and Reich reckon that the vast majority of drivers won’t qualify for it. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: With Prop. 22, Uber and Lyft used their wealth to shape labor law in their sole interest," 4 Nov. 2020 Then all of a sudden there's a reference to the 2003 George Clooney and Catherine Zeta Jones movie Intolerable Cruelty or someone makes a call on a Blackberry, and we're forced to reckon with the fact that 2003 wasn't five or even 10 years ago. Martha Sorren,, "Why Are Razr Flip Phones The Height Of Sophistication In Firefly Lane?," 5 Feb. 2021 Many colleges across the country were forced to reckon with similar divergences between what their own models said might happen and what actually did happen — divergences later attributed to a wide-ranging assortment of reasons., "The Hard Lessons of Modeling the Coronavirus Pandemic," 28 Jan. 2021 Yet with many Republicans still aligned with Mr. Trump and more unrest on the horizon, companies may be forced to reckon with this version of the Republican Party for years to come. David Gelles, New York Times, "‘We Need to Stabilize’: Big Business Breaks With Republicans," 15 Jan. 2021 After that funding ran out, airlines were forced to reckon with personnel costs, encouraging early retirement and voluntary leave, negotiating down costs with labor unions, and implementing furloughs and layoffs for the remaining gap. NBC News, "2020 was brutal for airlines. Next year could be even trickier.," 28 Dec. 2020 Mass commercial disruptions this year forced many countries to reckon with supply-chain weaknesses. Danielle Paquette, Washington Post, "The pandemic dealt a blow to global trade and revived an old dream: Self-reliance," 23 Dec. 2020

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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Statistics for reckon

Last Updated

2 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reckon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for reckon



English Language Learners Definition of reckon

informal : 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.

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