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 Oxy has sought to maintain healthy dividend payments to investors, many of whom were skeptical of its $37 billion acquisition of Anadarko. Paul Takahashi, Houston Chronicle, "Oxy slashes dividend payment for first time in 30 years after oil crash," 10 Mar. 2020 Antitrust agencies should be much more skeptical of incumbents buying startups. Andrew Mccreary, Fortune, "Silicon Valley needs to build out, not cash out," 9 Mar. 2020 There’s also legitimate reason to be skeptical of Cuba’s reported rates. Brendan Bell, National Review, "Bernie Sanders Is Wrong about Cuba’s Literacy Program," 6 Mar. 2020 But other scientists are skeptical of the mechanism. Paul Voosen, Science | AAAS, "Why does the weather stall? New theories explain enigmatic ‘blocks’ in the jet stream," 5 Mar. 2020 Other scholars now seek to reevaluate the archaeological and historical records around the horse’s initial domestication with a more skeptical eye. William Taylor, The Conversation, "Humans domesticated horses – new tech could help archaeologists figure out where and when," 2 Mar. 2020 This year could see more twisters than usual, according to one weather-forecasting service, but North Texas meteorologists are skeptical of that prediction. Dallas News, "Could 2020 see more tornadoes than normal? One forecast says yes," 25 Feb. 2020 The commuters on the 7:23 am train to New Street are more skeptical of this argument. Annabelle Timsit, Quartz, "The UK’s second city is divided by plans for a $140 billion high-speed railway," 17 Feb. 2020 Older and more conservative adults are more skeptical with many of them saying the movements have gone too far, a view held by a third of the public overall. Fred Backus, CBS News, "#MeToo and Time's Up: Most think the movements are making progress - CBS News poll," 7 Jan. 2020

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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Time Traveler for skeptical

Time Traveler

The first known use of skeptical was in 1639

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Statistics for skeptical

Last Updated

17 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Skeptical.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Mar. 2020.

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More Definitions for skeptical


How to pronounce skeptical (audio)

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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