follow Dictionary.com

How Well Do You Know English Slang?

discerning

[dih-sur-ning, -zur-] /dɪˈsɜr nɪŋ, -ˈzɜr-/
adjective
1.
showing good or outstanding judgment and understanding:
a discerning critic of French poetry.
Origin
1600-1610
1600-10; discern + -ing2
Related forms
discerningly, adverb
nondiscerning, adjective
undiscerning, adjective
undiscerningly, adverb
Synonyms
perceptive, keen, sharp, discriminating.

discern

[dih-surn, -zurn] /dɪˈsɜrn, -ˈzɜrn/
verb (used with object)
1.
to perceive by the sight or some other sense or by the intellect; see, recognize, or apprehend:
They discerned a sail on the horizon.
2.
to distinguish mentally; recognize as distinct or different; discriminate:
He is incapable of discerning right from wrong.
verb (used without object)
3.
to distinguish or discriminate.
Origin
1300-50; Middle English (< Old French) < Latin discernere to separate, equivalent to dis- dis-1 + cernere to separate
Related forms
discerner, noun
prediscern, verb (used with object)
undiscerned, adjective
Synonyms
1. discover, descry, espy. See notice. 2, 3. differentiate, judge.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for discerning
  • Let us all try to be more discerning.
  • I've never had trouble discerning the two.
  • The general public is far more discerning than the literary elite.
  • Good to see that some people out there actually have a discerning view of commodities.
  • Thank you for this refreshing bit of logical, discerning analysis.
  • It follows, then, that their appraisals are as discerning as human judgment can be.
  • There are gems to be found for the discerning shopper, though.
  • You assume the public is capable of discerning fact from fiction.
  • She's also blessed with a discerning palate.
  • It seems that ordinary people are now at odds - and more discerning - than the pundits, talking heads and scribblers.
British Dictionary definitions for discerning

discerning

/dɪˈsɜːnɪŋ/
adjective
1.
having or showing good taste or judgment; discriminating
Derived Forms
discerningly, adverb

discern

/dɪˈsɜːn/
verb
1.
(transitive) to recognize or perceive clearly
2.
to recognize or perceive (differences)
Derived Forms
discerner, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French discerner, from Latin discernere to divide, from dis-1 (apart) + cernere to separate
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for discerning

"action of perceiving," late 14c., verbal noun from discern. As a present participle adjective, attested from c.1600.

discern

v.

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for discerning

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for discerning

14
18
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with discerning

Nearby words for discerning