Definition of critic in US English:



  • 1A person who expresses an unfavorable opinion of something.

    ‘critics say many schools are not prepared to handle the influx of foreign students’
    • ‘It takes real guts to stop being just a critic of the system and come up with solutions, both practical and theoretical.’
    • ‘In his last decade, Irving had to endure the sceptical opinions of a new and young breed of critics.’
    • ‘Some critics of this letter may argue that at 19, I really have no right to speak out.’
    • ‘The Sunday Herald has also had its critics, most employed by rival publications.’
    • ‘Sadly it has been used by too many people as a weapon to attack their critics with.’
    • ‘He already had his critics but the scepticism now permeates the public as it has not done before.’
    • ‘The chancellor also had something up his sleeve for his critics in the City.’
    • ‘It was more closely modelled on the imperial system than either critic or supporter ever concedes.’
    • ‘Threatening to sue in order to silence a critic has simply spread the criticism much, much farther.’
    • ‘These critics have no idea about the stress the exams cause to the students, teachers and parents.’
    • ‘There are many critics of this system.’
    • ‘It was this generation who became the strongest critics of the communist system.’
    • ‘The poll tax had its critics but it was a lot fairer than the current system.’
    • ‘You say that critics are sceptical, but I wonder whether this is money well spent.’
    • ‘I know the play-off system has its critics but it definitely keeps the season alive.’
    • ‘He's also a strident critic of the auction system, and dubious about recent reforms.’
    • ‘I was for many years a supporter of the planning system, then a doubter, now a critic.’
    • ‘We won't believe things are as bad as critics say until we turn on our tap and no water flows out.’
    • ‘For every fan there has been a critic and no player has polarised public opinion more.’
    • ‘At the time, critics attacked the show for pandering to the middle class fear of a right wing police state.’
    detractor, censurer, attacker, fault-finder, carper, backbiter, caviller, reviler, vilifier, traducer, disparager, denigrator, deprecator, belittler
    View synonyms
  • 2A person who judges the merits of literary, artistic, or musical works, especially one who does so professionally.

    ‘a film critic’
    • ‘She worked first as a news reporter, then feature writer, film critic and agony aunt.’
    • ‘Why do critics think that a legitimate purpose of criticism is to attack art?’
    • ‘In the last few days, film critics have been allowed to see and review the movie.’
    • ‘In the end, the mistake critics always make when dismissing a musical genre is to damn it for what it's not.’
    • ‘His career as a film critic provides particularly revealing clues about his desire to collect.’
    • ‘They commented how a lot of viewers and even critics misunderstood the film and its code.’
    • ‘This is also true of newspaper critics who cover the arts, films, music, and books.’
    • ‘You will go to a screening with other critics then write a review to appear in the paper with a photograph of you.’
    • ‘It is extremely important for feminist film critics to begin to address these questions.’
    • ‘She got poor reviews from the critics, who appear to have turned completely against her.’
    • ‘In this respect, he has been sadly misunderstood and his work misrepresented by his critics.’
    • ‘The prizes are voted for by North American film critics and awarded in January.’
    • ‘I suggest to him that universal popularity is rarely appreciated by film critics.’
    • ‘His films have divided critics and commentators like those of no other American director.’
    • ‘Acclaimed as a comic masterpiece by critics, it stars Malcolm Adams and Hugh Lee.’
    • ‘What do you think should be the role of film critics in today's film culture?’
    • ‘A brief stint as an art editor and critic saw Peeradina reviewing books, plays and movies.’
    • ‘In fact, his appetite led him to depths of observation that eluded many other artists and critics.’
    • ‘Knowing that you've got a really big audience in but they're all critics would be a bit of a mixed blessing.’
    • ‘The critics who attacked the work were not of course implying that Dali could not paint.’
    commentator, observer, monitor, pundit, expert, authority, arbiter, interpreter, exponent, expounder
    View synonyms


Late 16th century: from Latin criticus, from Greek kritikos, from kritēs ‘a judge’, from krinein ‘judge, decide’.