Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To criticize or correct after an outcome is known.
  • transitive v. To outguess.
  • transitive v. To predict or anticipate: "She can second-guess indictments” ( Scott Turow).
  • intransitive v. To criticize a decision after its outcome is known.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To attempt to predict or anticipate.
  • v. 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.

  • v. attempt to anticipate or predict
  • v. evaluate or criticize with hindsight

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • 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.

    American Idol Episode Recap: The Top 8 Revealed

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

    Not to Second Guess, But...

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

    Mandala « A Fly in Amber

  • 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

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

    'Tough' NFL culture counter to league's fight vs. concussions

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

    The 7

  • 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

  • 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.

  • 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.

    Roseanne Archy

  • Before I can second-guess myself into inaction I push the door of the car open and stride up to the front door, rapping on it with my knuckles, rap rap rap a steady rap.

    The Kitchen Daughter

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