from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To criticize or correct after an outcome is known.
  • intransitive verb To outguess.
  • intransitive verb To predict or anticipate.
  • intransitive verb To criticize a decision after its outcome is known.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb idiomatic To attempt to predict or anticipate.
  • verb idiomatic, US to vet or evaluate; to criticize or correct, often by hindsight, by presuming to have a better idea, method, etc.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb attempt to anticipate or predict
  • verb evaluate or criticize with hindsight


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • It was only Douglas and his opinion of Jason that gave her pause and made her second-guess her decision to bring him.

    I.O.U. Elle 2011

  • The rewrite came and it was worse than the first version, a tactic I found common to almost all male writers whose genius I had the audacity to second-guess.

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  • He has been rewriting Plus's listing rules and trying to second-guess the European market infrastructure regulation, MiFID II and U.K. regulatory changes.

    Careers Take Flight in Turbulent Skies Michelle Price 2011

  • I often second-guess my phrasing, choice of content, I ask myself if I'm lacking necessary description in one area, am I going on for too long in another, am I even making sense, do I even have a point?

    The Five Stages of Editing Lavinia Ludlow 2011

  • He worried that teammates would second-guess his desire to play but ultimately told doctors of lingering neck pain.

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  • Alone, you can second-guess yourself to distraction.

    Mandala « A Fly in Amber 2010

  • Worse, we may acknowledge them but then second-guess and quickly bury them.

    The 7 Glenn Beck 2011

  • But I think an even better idea is to get rid of the save altogether, that way we can all be shocked and appalled, but nobody has to second-guess a decision or make Casey feel like crap that he's still there and that perhaps the best vocalist in the competition has gone home.

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  • Knicks team president Donnie Walsh said last summer he will "second-guess myself forever " on the deal.

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  • Worse, we may acknowledge them but then second-guess and quickly bury them.

    The 7 Glenn Beck 2011


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