- a public officer authorized to hear and decide cases in a court of law; a magistrate charged with the administration of justice.
- a person appointed to decide in any competition, contest, or matter at issue; authorized arbiter: the judges of a beauty contest.
- a person qualified to pass a critical judgment: a good judge of horses.
- an administrative head of Israel in the period between the death of Joshua and the accession to the throne by Saul.
- (especially in rural areas) a county official with supervisory duties, often employed part-time or on an honorary basis.
verb (used with object), judged, judg·ing.
- to pass legal judgment on; pass sentence on (a person): The court judged him guilty.
- to hear evidence or legal arguments in (a case) in order to pass judgment; adjudicate; try: The Supreme Court is judging that case.
- to form a judgment or opinion of; decide upon critically: You can’t judge a book by its cover.
- to decide or settle authoritatively; adjudge: The censor judged the book obscene and forbade its sale.
- to infer, think, or hold as an opinion; conclude about or assess: He judged her to be correct.
- to make a careful guess about; estimate: We judged the distance to be about four miles.
- (of the ancient Hebrew judges) to govern.
verb (used without object), judged, judg·ing.
- to act as a judge; pass judgment: No one would judge between us.
- to form an opinion or estimate: I have heard the evidence and will judge accordingly.
- to make a mental judgment.
- a public official with authority to hear cases in a court of law and pronounce judgment upon themCompare magistrate (def. 1), justice (def. 5), justice (def. 6) Related adjective: judicial
- a person who is appointed to determine the result of contests or competitions
- a person qualified to comment criticallya good judge of antiques
- a leader of the peoples of Israel from Joshua’s death to the accession of Saul
- to hear and decide upon (a case at law)
- (tr) to pass judgment on; sentence
- (when tr, may take a clause as object or an infinitive) to decide or deem (something) after inquiry or deliberation
- to determine the result of (a contest or competition)
- to appraise (something) critically
- (tr; takes a clause as object) to believe (something) to be the case; suspect
mid-14c. (early 13c. as a surname), also judge-man; see judge (v.). In Hebrew history, it refers to a war leader vested with temporary power (e.g. Book of Judges), from Latin iudex being used to translate Hebrew shophet.
c.1300, “to form an opinion about; make a decision,” also “to try and pronounce sentence upon (someone) in a court,” from Anglo-French juger, Old French jugier “to judge, pronounce judgment; pass an opinion on,” from Latin iudicare “to judge, to examine officially; form an opinion upon; pronounce judgment,” from iudicem (nominative iudex) “a judge,” a compound of ius “right, law” (see just (adj.)) + root of dicere “to say” (see diction). Related: Judged; judging. From mid-14c. as “to regard, consider.” The Old English word was deman (see doom). Spelling with -dg- emerged mid-15c.
In addition to the idiom beginning with judge
- judge a book by its cover, one can’t
- sober as a judge