- to perceive by the sight or some other sense or by the intellect; see, recognize, or apprehend: They discerned a sail on the horizon.
- to distinguish mentally; recognize as distinct or different; discriminate: He is incapable of discerning right from wrong.
- to distinguish or discriminate.
Origin of discern
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for discerner
In it is a cave where dwells a saint who is called ‘The Discerner.’The Chinese Fairy Book
He was a lover of truth, and believed himself to be a discerner of it.A Spirit in Prison
It was an acknowledged sign of a true prophet to be a discerner of hearts.The Parables of Our Lord
It is described as "a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."Inspiration and Interpretation
It is the true "discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."Practical Religion
John Charles Ryle
- (tr) to recognize or perceive clearly
- to recognize or perceive (differences)
Word Origin and History for discerner
late 14c., from Old French discerner (13c.) "distinguish (between), separate" (by sifting), and directly from Latin discernere "to separate, set apart, divide, distribute; distinguish, perceive," from dis- "off, away" (see dis-) + cernere "distinguish, separate, sift" (see crisis). Related: Discerned; discerning.