View synonyms for augur



[ aw-ger ]


  1. in ancient Rome, any of a group of officials charged with observing and interpreting omens for guidance in public affairs.
  2. Sometimes au·gur·er []. someone who foretells the future and interprets omens; soothsayer or prophet.

verb (used with object)

  1. to serve as an omen or promise of; foreshadow; betoken:

    Mounting sales augur a profitable year.

  2. to predict or foretell, as from signs or omens:

    He made careful calculations and augured happy and sure success for the new enterprise.

    The curator augurs from ticket sales that this exhibition will be the dawning of the artist’s career.

verb (used without object)

  1. to be a sign of a certain kind of outcome; bode (well, ill, etc.):

    The movement of troops augurs ill for the peace of the area.

  2. to make a prediction or guess based on signs or omens:

    Despite receiving him coolly, she had not refused his gift, and he augured favorably from that.



[ aw-ger ]

verb (used without object)

  1. to argue, talk, or converse.


  1. an excessively talkative person.


/ ˈɔːɡə; ˈɔːɡjʊrəl /


  1. Also calledauspex (in ancient Rome) a religious official who observed and interpreted omens and signs to help guide the making of public decisions
  2. any prophet or soothsayer


  1. to predict (some future event), as from signs or omens
  2. tr; may take a clause as object to be an omen (of); presage
  3. intr to foreshadow future events to be as specified; bode

    this augurs well for us

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Derived Forms

  • ˈaugurship, noun
  • augural, adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of augur1

First recorded in 1540–50; from Latin augur, variant of auger “diviner, soothsayer,” derivative of augēre “to increase,” with the original implication of “to prosper”; augment, august

Origin of augur2

First recorded in 1920–25; variant of argue; noun perhaps by association with auger

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Word History and Origins

Origin of augur1

C14: from Latin: a diviner, perhaps from augēre to increase

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Example Sentences

And they augur badly for the overall effort, revealing the deep level of distrust the Turkish president harbors for the West.

This is a trend that does not augur well for a Paul candidacy.

The three elections were all about the same thing—hope for this new future the Obama coalition seemed to augur, or fear of it.

Though fraudulent inducement does not ordinarily augur well, it worked.

The pope's comment that he wouldn't 'judge' gay priests seemed to augur a new era of inclusiveness from the church.

The return of these men, if indeed they were responsible for the condition of the man upstairs, might augur further evil for him.

Here is a short-handled augur, to make a hole for the saw to go through.

The mode in which the title was acquired did not augur well for the justice or the morality which was to reign there.

This, however, proves a certain delicacy of feeling, and such traits lead me to augur all that is good.

I augur no good for him, said Madame Germeuil, who breathed more freely since the face had withdrawn from the gate.


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More About Augur

What does augur mean?

Augur means to be a sign or omen of something.

To say that an event or occurrence augurs well for the future means that it is a sign or promise of good things to come—that it foreshadows that things will go well, as in These clear skies augur well for our chances of holding the parade. The verb bode is a close synonym, as in This does not bode well for us.

This sense of augur is often followed by a word describing a positive or negative outcome, especially well or ill, or a specific outcome, as in Early results of the testing augur success.

As a noun, the word augur can be used to refer to a kind of prophet, oracle, or soothsayer—a person who is said to be able to predict the future by using some mystical ability or means.

This sense of augur comes from a more specific use of it as a noun referring to an Ancient Roman official who acted as soothsayer or priest. Such augurs were responsible for interpreting omens to guide decisions. Roman lawmakers would consult augurs before officially taking a position.

As a verb, augur can also mean to predict using omens or in some other mystical way. Similar words are divine and prognosticate.

The related noun augury refers to the practice of soothsaying or divination.

Example: So far, the tone of the negotiations augur well for an agreement.

Where does augur come from?

The first records of the word augur come from the 1540s. It comes from the Latin augur or auger, meaning “a diviner” or “a soothsayer,” from the verb augēre, “to increase” or “to augment” (with the implication of making something prosper). The English words augment and inaugurate are based on the same root. Inaugurate means “to formally induct someone into public office” and its origin alludes to the Roman practice of politicians consulting augurs.

The Ancient Roman augurs were highly respected religious officials. They were consulted prior to major events such as wars, the founding of colonies, and the induction (inauguration) of political officials. Much of their augury was based on interpreting the flight patterns of birds. Another word for this kind of augur is auspex. The related word auspice means “a favorable sign” or “a divination or prognostication, such as from observing birds.”

Even when augur is used in a general way simply meaning “to be a sign of things to come,” it is associated with the mysticism of its more specific uses that involve people claiming to actually predict the future.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to augur?

  • augury (noun)
  • augural (adjective)
  • augurship (noun)

What are some synonyms for augur?

What are some words that share a root or word element with augur

What are some words that often get used in discussing augur?

What are some words augur may be commonly confused with?

How is augur used in real life?

Augur is commonly used in the phrase augur well for. Even when it’s used in a general way, it often calls to mind its more specific senses involving mystical ways of predicting the future.

Try using augur!

Which of the following words can be used as a synonym of augur when it refers to a person who is said to be able to predict the future?

A. seer
B. soothsayer
C. prognosticator
D. all of the above




Augsburg Confessionaugurer