un·​der·​es·​ti·​mate | \ ˌən-dər-ˈe-stə-ˌmāt How to pronounce underestimate (audio) \
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 How to pronounce underestimate (audio) \ noun
underestimation \ ˌən-​dər-​ˌe-​stə-​ˈmā-​shən How to pronounce underestimation (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for underestimate



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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 Never underestimate the power of a great pair of wireless headphones. Kelsey Mulvey, Good Housekeeping, "Amazon's Taking $40 off This Insanely Popular Pair of Wireless Headphones," 5 Mar. 2020 The chaos out of Iowa has certainly provided confirmation to those of us who argued that the likelihood of a contested convention was being underestimated. Noah Millman, TheWeek, "Elizabeth Warren's last chance," 6 Feb. 2020 Don’t underestimate how far a bird can see through early season open hardwoods either. Matt Wettish, Outdoor Life, "9 Rules For Hunting Roosted Gobblers," 5 Feb. 2020 That's how much scientists may be underestimating the impact of melting permafrost, according to a new report in Nature Geoscience. Alex Baker-whitcomb, Wired, "The Iowa Caucus Meltdown, a Coronavirus Mask Shortage, and More News," 4 Feb. 2020 If Monday’s game becomes a shootout with a close score late, don’t underestimate the importance of LSU freshman PK Cade York who is 21-for-26 on field goals this season. Skip Snow, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "National Football Championship: LSU vs. Clemson odds, picks and best bets," 10 Jan. 2020 And finally, don’t underestimate the power of a fringe of tropical foliage peeking over the top of the stall to evoke the feeling of a secluded jungle retreat. Jennifer Fernandez, ELLE Decor, "5 Ways to Transform Any Beach House into a Serene Tropical Oasis," 27 Nov. 2019 Betts has a tendency to underestimate his own talent. Julian Mcwilliams, BostonGlobe.com, "Alex Cora really will be missed in the Red Sox clubhouse," 14 Jan. 2020 Reviled by serious data experts, a 1984 study outlined how people tend to underestimate the size of acute angles (90°). Dan Kopf, Quartz, "Designers and statisticians disagree on what makes a good information graphic," 12 Jan. 2020

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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Time Traveler for underestimate

Time Traveler

The first known use of underestimate was in 1792

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Statistics for underestimate

Last Updated

20 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Underestimate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/underestimate. Accessed 1 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for underestimate


How to pronounce underestimate (audio)

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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