underestimate

verb
un·​der·​es·​ti·​mate | \ ˌən-dər-ˈe-stə-ˌmāt \
underestimated; underestimating; underestimates

Definition of underestimate

transitive verb

1 : to estimate as being less than the actual size, quantity, or number
2 : to place too low a value on : underrate

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Other Words from underestimate

underestimate \ ˌən-​dər-​ˈe-​stə-​mət \ noun
underestimation \ ˌən-​dər-​ˌe-​stə-​ˈmā-​shən \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for underestimate

Synonyms

underrate, undervalue

Antonyms

overestimate, overrate, overvalue

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Examples of underestimate in a Sentence

The city underestimated the cost of the new building. The number of people in the crowd was underestimated by 5,000. Never underestimate the importance of a good education. Her talent has always been underestimated.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Still, for much of Dumplin’, Willowdean is constantly underestimated and dismissed by her mother and others in her small town community as a serious pageant contender because of her weight. Shammara Lawrence, Teen Vogue, ""Dumplin'" Star Danielle Macdonald on the Power of Willowdean, Overcoming Self-Doubt, and Embracing the Movie's Message," 9 Dec. 2018 Elegant and understated in his antiapartheid activism and his on-the-court manners, Ashe was as underestimated as Mr. Brown was intimidating. Jane Leavy, WSJ, "What to Give: Sports Books," 16 Nov. 2018 Trump’s support was underestimated by roughly 4 points in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota, a post-election autopsy published by the American Association for Public Opinion Research found. Dylan Scott, Vox, "Democrats suddenly look strong again in the Midwest," 25 Oct. 2018 The 2001 paper said civilian outbreaks of the type 7 infection had not been frequently reported because of a lack of lab resources, and that the full impact on chronic-care facilities and hospitals is likely underestimated. Mike Catalini, The Seattle Times, "6 children dead, 12 sick in viral outbreak at rehab center," 23 Oct. 2018 In Walsh’s play, women like Lizzie aren’t just underestimated. Mike Fischer, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Door County theaters add stories and sparkle to summer nights," 11 July 2018 Plans that overestimate pay all the extra money back, and ones that underestimate get fully reimbursed by Medicare. Christopher Weaver, WSJ, "The $9 Billion Upcharge: How Insurers Kept Extra Cash From Medicare," 4 Jan. 2019 In the oversupply scenario — which likely underestimates real-world oversupply — the cap-and-trade system will produce ... no additional reductions through 2030. David Roberts, Vox, "California’s cap-and-trade system may be too weak to do its job," 12 Dec. 2018 Trips already take that long with the viaduct available – so the state numbers likely underestimate future driving times. Mike Lindblom, The Seattle Times, "What will the Highway 99 tunnel opening mean for bus routes, detours and tsunamis? We answer those questions and more," 12 Dec. 2018

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

1792, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for underestimate

Last Updated

24 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for underestimate

The first known use of underestimate was in 1792

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More Definitions for underestimate

underestimate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of underestimate

: to estimate (something) as being less than the actual size, quantity, or number
: to think of (someone or something) as being lower in ability, influence, or value than that person or thing actually is

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