Definition of scrutinize
: to examine closely and minutely
: to make a scrutiny
Examples of scrutinize in a sentence
I closely scrutinized my opponent's every move.
Her performance was carefully scrutinized by her employer.
Did You Know?
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.
First Known Use of scrutinize
Synonym Discussion of scrutinize
SCRUTINIZE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of scrutinize for English Language Learners
: to examine (something) carefully especially in a critical way
SCRUTINIZE Defined for Kids
Definition of scrutinize for Students
: to examine very closely <… I stood still and scrutinized the place where I'd seen movement. — Avi, Crispin>
Seen and Heard
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