or scep·tic

[ skep-tik ]
/ ˈskɛp tɪk /


a person who questions the validity or authenticity of something purporting to be factual.
a person who maintains a doubting attitude, as toward values, plans, statements, or the character of others.
a person who doubts the truth of a religion, especially Christianity, or of important elements of it.
(initial capital letter) Philosophy.
  1. a member of a philosophical school of ancient Greece, the earliest group of which consisted of Pyrrho and his followers, who maintained that real knowledge of things is impossible.
  2. any later thinker who doubts or questions the possibility of real knowledge of any kind.


pertaining to skeptics or skepticism; skeptical.
(initial capital letter) pertaining to the Skeptics.

Origin of skeptic

1565–75; < Late Latin scepticus thoughtful, inquiring (in plural Scepticī the Skeptics) < Greek skeptikós, equivalent to sképt(esthai) to consider, examine (akin to skopeîn to look; see -scope) + -ikos -ic

Related forms

an·ti·skep·tic, nounnon·skep·tic, adjective, noun

Can be confused

cynic optimist pessimist skeptic

Synonym study

3. See agnostic. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for skeptic

British Dictionary definitions for skeptic


/ (ˈskɛptɪk) /

noun, adjective

an archaic, and the usual US, spelling of sceptic

Derived Forms

skeptical, adjectiveskeptically, adverbskepticalness, nounskepticism, noun
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