skep·​ti·​cal | \ ˈskep-ti-kəl How to pronounce skeptical (audio) \

Definition of skeptical

: relating to, characteristic of, or marked by skepticism a skeptical listener

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Other Words from skeptical

skeptically \ ˈskep-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce skeptically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of skeptical in a Sentence

She's highly skeptical of the researchers' claims. He says he can win, but I remain skeptical. When I said I'd finished my homework early, Mom looked skeptical.
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Recent Examples on the Web

However, more skeptical commenters suggested that the face could simply belong to an extra who happened to stare into the camera. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Is That a Face Behind Sansa Stark in the New Game of Thrones Photos?," 26 Apr. 2019 And even those who were skeptical at first seem to have their fears eased, a least a little bit. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "The New 'Aladdin' Trailer Will Change the Way You See Will Smith's Genie," 12 Mar. 2019 Sansa is skeptical about Cersei sending her armies North to fight for Tyrion. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Game of Thrones Season 8, Episode 1: Everything You Need to Know," 15 Apr. 2019 The European Commission, the European Union’s competition enforcer, has long been skeptical about a deal that EU officials say would damage competition. Valentina Pop, WSJ, "Plan to Create European Train Giant May Be Derailed by Antitrust Concerns," 30 Jan. 2019 One source, who has (rightly) been skeptical about past launch dates set by the commercial crew program, expressed optimism that both SpaceX and NASA are working effectively toward a January launch date for this mission. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Rocket Report: Rokot ending, more spaceports, back-to-back Falcon Heavies," 21 Dec. 2018 But a small group of lawmakers are skeptical of American efforts to remove Mr. Maduro... Andrew Duehren And Courtney Mcbride, WSJ, "Democrats Strain for a Unified Message on Venezuela," 28 Feb. 2019 Instead, Biden started the hearing on a skeptical note by asking Hill to cite the precise physical locations for all of her allegations against Thomas, ostensibly forcing her to repeat them through sighs. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "What's Missing from Joe Biden's Anita Hill Comments," 27 Mar. 2019 But read them with a skeptical eye, because there’s no way to evaluate the credibility of the posters. Sue Shellenbarger, WSJ, "Companies Hire on Potential—If Only They Knew What That Meant," 12 Mar. 2019

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

1639, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for skeptical

Last Updated

13 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for skeptical

The first known use of skeptical was in 1639

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More Definitions for skeptical



English Language Learners Definition of skeptical

: having or expressing doubt about something (such as a claim or statement)


skep·​ti·​cal | \ ˈskep-ti-kəl How to pronounce skeptical (audio) \

Kids Definition of skeptical

: having or showing doubt He thinks he'll make money, but I'm skeptical.

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Comments on skeptical

What made you want to look up skeptical? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a strong desire or propensity

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