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noun (1)

crit·​ic ˈkri-tik How to pronounce critic (audio)
: one who engages often professionally in the analysis, evaluation, or appreciation of works of art or artistic performances
a literary critic
a film critic
a theater critic
: one who expresses a reasoned opinion on any matter especially involving a judgment of its value, truth, righteousness, beauty, or technique
Critics of the new law say that it will not reduce crime.
: one given to harsh or captious judgment
a fierce critic of immigration policies


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noun (2)

archaic : criticism
archaic : critique

Examples of critic in a Sentence

Noun (1) the president's hard-core critics are going to attack him no matter what he does the restaurant critic said that the fries at that fast-food outlet were the worst she'd ever eaten
Recent Examples on the Web
But some critics said the initiative had come too late. Alexandra Stevenson, New York Times, 24 May 2024 Leave no room for your critics to point the finger or dismantle your plans. Eugenia Last, The Mercury News, 23 May 2024 Yet some critics call the effort a power grab by city officials and developers who want to limit neighborhood input on controversial projects, especially high-rise projects that could help solve the local housing crisis. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 May 2024 Many critics of Israel or Israeli government policy say opposing the expansion of the country’s control over land claimed by Palestinians is not an anti-Jewish or antisemitic position but one of fairness. Tracy Wilkinson, Los Angeles Times, 22 May 2024 Rasoulof is one of Iran’s leading living filmmakers and among the most prominent critics of the Tehran regime. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, 22 May 2024 While Georgia was given official candidate status for EU membership in 2023, critics say the foreign agents bill is incompatible with European values of democracy and free speech. Rebecca Rosman, NPR, 13 May 2024 Former Union-Tribune art critic Robert Pincus will interview Moore about her work and there will be Colombian food and music. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, 12 May 2024 Memphis freelance journalist and music critic Justin Davis has been closely watching the beef. Bob Mehr, USA TODAY, 11 May 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'critic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

borrowed from Latin criticus, borrowed from Greek kritikós, derivative of kritikós, adjective, "discerning, capable of judging," from kritós "separated, picked out" (verbal adjective of krī́nein "to separate, choose, decide, judge") + -ikos -ic entry 1 — more at certain entry 1

Noun (2)

borrowed from French critique critique entry 1

First Known Use

Noun (1)

1587, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Noun (2)

1616, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of critic was in 1587

Dictionary Entries Near critic

Cite this Entry

“Critic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a person who makes or gives a judgment of the value, worth, beauty, or excellence of something

More from Merriam-Webster on critic

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