[verb es-tuh-meyt; noun es-tuh-mit, -meyt]

verb (used with object), es·ti·mat·ed, es·ti·mat·ing.

to form an approximate judgment or opinion regarding the worth, amount, size, weight, etc., of; calculate approximately: to estimate the cost of a college education.
to form an opinion of; judge.

verb (used without object), es·ti·mat·ed, es·ti·mat·ing.

to make an estimate.


an approximate judgment or calculation, as of the value, amount, time, size, or weight of something.
a judgment or opinion, as of the qualities of a person or thing.
a statement of the approximate charge for work to be done, submitted by a person or business firm ready to undertake the work.

Origin of estimate

1525–35; < Latin aestimātus, past participle of aestimāre to value, estimate; see -ate1
Related formses·ti·mat·ing·ly, adverbes·ti·ma·tor, nounpre·es·ti·mate, verb (used with object), pre·es·ti·mat·ed, pre·es·ti·mat·ing.pre·es·ti·mate, nounre·es·ti·mate, verb (used with object), re·es·ti·mat·ed, re·es·ti·mat··es·ti·mate, nounself-es·ti·mate, nounun·es·ti·mat·ed, adjectivewell-es·ti·mat·ed, adjective

Synonyms for estimate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for estimate

Contemporary Examples of estimate

Historical Examples of estimate

  • He looked above to estimate the ground he could cover on the morrow.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Now this, it seems to me, is my point of departure for the estimate of my possible resources.

  • Lessing is obsessed with too high an estimate of the Captivi.

    The Dramatic Values in Plautus

    Wilton Wallace Blancke

  • She could not feel that she had been wrong in her estimate of John Gilman.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • Had she grown so accustomed to her aunt Judith's estimate of Mabel that she could accept it?

British Dictionary definitions for estimate


verb (ˈɛstɪˌmeɪt)

to form an approximate idea of (distance, size, cost, etc); calculate roughly; gauge
(tr; may take a clause as object) to form an opinion about; judgeto estimate one's chances
to submit (an approximate price) for (a job) to a prospective client
(tr) statistics to assign a value (a point estimate) or range of values (an interval estimate) to a parameter of a population on the basis of sampling statisticsSee estimator

noun (ˈɛstɪmɪt)

an approximate calculation
a statement indicating the likely charge for or cost of certain work
a judgment; appraisal; opinion
Derived Formsestimative, adjective

Word Origin for estimate

C16: from Latin aestimāre to assess the worth of, of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for estimate

1560s, "valuation," from Latin aestimatus, verbal noun from aestimare (see esteem). Earlier in sense "power of the mind" (mid-15c.). Meaning "approximate judgment" is from 1580s. As a builder's statement of projected costs, from 1796.


1530s, "appraise the worth of," from Latin aestimatus, past participle of aestimare "to value, appraise" (see esteem). Meaning "form an approximate notion" is from 1660s. Related: Estimated; estimates; estimating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper