scrutinize

verb
scru·​ti·​nize | \ ˈskrü-tə-ˌnīz How to pronounce scrutinize (audio) \
scrutinized; scrutinizing

Definition of scrutinize

transitive verb

: to examine closely and minutely

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Other Words from scrutinize

scrutinizer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for scrutinize

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

Scrutinize This Word's Etymology

A close look at the etymology of scrutinize reveals that the word stems from the Latin verb scrutari (meaning "to search" or "to examine"), which in turn probably comes from scruta (meaning "trash," or more specifically "a mixture of worthwhile articles and trash"). In the 15th century scrutari gave us the noun scrutiny, a word that originally meant "a formal vote" and then "an official examination of votes." Scrutinize retained reference to voting, with the meaning "to examine votes," at least into the 18th century-and even today in Britain a scrutineer is a person who counts votes.

Examples of scrutinize in a Sentence

I closely scrutinized my opponent's every move. Her performance was carefully scrutinized by her employer.

Recent Examples on the Web

Nature was Ruskin’s touchstone: One notebook is open to botanical sketches—the results of a scrutinizing gaze and subtle hand. Edward Rothstein, WSJ, "‘The Rise of Everyday Design: The Arts and Crafts Movement in Britain and America’ Review: Reformist, Yet Committed to Beauty," 11 Feb. 2019 And who knows, maybe one day Ninja will be as scrutinized as Messi. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "I hope the Fortnite World Cup looks a lot like the real World Cup," 13 July 2018 This isn't the first time that the charter school has been scrutinized for its relationship with Fowler, who helped to found the school. Diana Lambert, sacbee, "Adult charter could lose state funds, face sanctions after state review finds questionable practices," 3 July 2018 With the public scrutinizing her every move, the fashion statement served as a bold reminder—to both spectators and for herself—that Dion plays by her own rules. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Céline Dion’s New Shirt Speaks Volumes," 31 Jan. 2019 Then there is the web of political groups Stone deployed on Trump’s behalf — Mueller has been scrutinizing their finances, which could raise campaign finance issues. Andrew Prokop, Vox, "Robert Mueller sure still is interested in Roger Stone," 2 Nov. 2018 The company’s treatment of its workforce is still constantly being scrutinized, and will demand greater attention as Tesla pushes into new regions like China in 2019. Sean O'kane, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: Tesla," 29 Dec. 2018 Your wardrobe is scrutinized — for a fascinating reason. Megan Friedman, House Beautiful, "A Realtor Has Revealed Exactly What It’s Like To Film 'House Hunters'," 17 Aug. 2018 Certainly here, female politicians are so scrutinized. Laura Regensdorf, Vogue, "Glenda Jackson, 82, on Sexism, Earning Your Wrinkles, and Cynthia Nixon's Run for Governor," 9 May 2018

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

1671, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for scrutinize

Last Updated

15 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scrutinize

The first known use of scrutinize was in 1671

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More Definitions for scrutinize

scrutinize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of scrutinize

: to examine (something) carefully especially in a critical way

scrutinize

verb
scru·​ti·​nize | \ ˈskrü-tə-ˌnīz How to pronounce scrutinize (audio) \
scrutinized; scrutinizing

Kids Definition of scrutinize

: to examine very closely … I stood still and scrutinized the place where I'd seen movement.— Avi, Crispin

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