pass judgment

When you pass judgment, you express your strong disapproval of someone or something. If you're overly critical of your sister, you probably tend to pass judgment on every little move she makes.

The worst thing about people who pass judgment on others is that they tend to act morally superior, as if they're in a position to judge the actions of other people. In fact, the original meaning of pass judgment is a courtroom judge making a legal decision, or — literally — judging. The source of this term is judgment, originally "action of trying at law," from the Latin iudicare, "to examine officially."

Definitions of pass judgment
  1. verb
    form a critical opinion of
    synonyms: evaluate, judge
    see moresee less
    show 94 types...
    hide 94 types...
    grade, order, place, range, rank, rate
    assign a rank or rating to
    have or maintain a position or stand on an issue
    judge to be right or commendable; think well of
    consider bad or wrong
    see fit or proper to act in a certain way; decide to act in a certain way
    judge beforehand, especially without sufficient evidence
    appraise, assess, evaluate, measure, valuate, value
    evaluate or estimate the nature, quality, ability, extent, or significance of
    appraise anew
    refuse to accept or acknowledge
    consider or hold as true
    believe, conceive, consider, think
    judge or regard; look upon; judge
    calculate, count on, estimate, figure, forecast, reckon
    judge to be probable
    anticipate, expect
    regard something as probable or likely
    ascribe, assign, attribute, impute
    attribute or credit to
    assign, attribute
    decide as to where something belongs in a scheme
    disapprove, reject
    deem wrong or inappropriate
    adjudge, declare, hold
    declare to be
    critique, review
    appraise critically
    judge unacceptable
    accept or judge as acceptable
    essay, examine, prove, test, try, try out
    put to the test, as for its quality, or give experimental use to
    acknowledge, know, recognise, recognize
    accept (someone) to be what is claimed or accept his power and authority
    adopt, embrace, espouse, sweep up
    take up the cause, ideology, practice, method, of someone and use it as one's own
    remain committed to
    guess, imagine, opine, reckon, suppose, think
    expect, believe, or suppose
    assume, presume, take for granted
    take to be the case or to be true; accept without verification or proof
    conjecture, hypothecate, hypothesise, hypothesize, speculate, suppose, theorise, theorize
    believe especially on uncertain or tentative grounds
    grade, mark, score
    assign a grade or rank to, according to one's evaluation
    place in a superior order or rank
    put someone or something on a short list
    distribute (players or teams) so that outstanding teams or players will not meet in the early rounds
    assign a new order to
    rank or order as less important or consider of less value
    prioritise, prioritize
    assign a priority to
    arrange in a sequence
    rate lower; lower in value or esteem
    rate higher; raise in value or esteem
    rate, value
    estimate the value of
    frown on, frown upon
    look disapprovingly upon
    approve automatically
    standardise, standardize
    evaluate by comparing with a standard
    reassess, reevaluate
    revise or renew one's assessment
    subject to political, religious, or moral censorship
    accept as true; take to be true
    disbelieve, discredit
    reject as false; refuse to accept
    refuse to acknowledge, ratify, or recognize as valid
    challenge or except to a judge as being incompetent or interested, in canon and civil law
    accept as true or valid
    accept (documents) as valid
    reject (documents) as invalid
    change one's mind
    dispose the mind in a certain way
    esteem, look on, look upon, perceive, regard as, repute, take to be, think of
    look on as or consider
    have a feeling or perception about oneself in reaction to someone's behavior or attitude
    consider, reckon, regard, see, view
    deem to be
    believe, trust
    be confident about something
    allow, take into account
    allow or plan for a certain possibility; concede the truth or validity of something
    attribute (responsibility or fault) to a cause or source
    carnalise, carnalize, sensualise, sensualize
    ascribe to an origin in sensation
    give someone credit for something
    attribute to another source
    anthropomorphise, anthropomorphize
    ascribe human features to something
    personate, personify
    attribute human qualities to something
    accredit, credit
    ascribe an achievement to
    blame, charge
    attribute responsibility to
    externalise, externalize, project
    regard as objective
    interiorise, interiorize, internalise, internalize
    incorporate within oneself; make subjective or personal
    reconcile, resign, submit
    accept as inevitable
    show disapproval by discouraging
    align, array
    align oneself with a group or a way of thinking
    classify, relegate
    assign to a class or kind
    accept as legally binding and valid
    disown, renounce, repudiate
    cast off
    brush aside, brush off, discount, dismiss, disregard, ignore, push aside
    bar from attention or consideration
    express or raise an objection or protest or criticism or express dissent
    acknowledge, admit
    declare to be true or admit the existence or reality or truth of
    declare to be obsolete
    bastardise, bastardize
    declare a child to be illegitimate
    declare legally insane
    declare in the capacity of an umpire or referee
    declare (a dead person) to be blessed; the first step of achieving sainthood
    canonise, canonize, saint
    declare (a dead person) to be a saint
    peer review, referee
    evaluate professionally a colleague's work
    express strong disapproval of; deplore
    express approval of
    take a bow
    acknowledge praise or accept credit
    deter, discourage
    try to prevent; show opposition to
    judge, label, pronounce
    pronounce judgment on
    abide by, honor, honour, observe, respect
    show respect towards
    cancel, strike down
    declare null and void; make ineffective
    formalise, formalize
    make formal or official
    control, verify
    check or regulate (a scientific experiment) by conducting a parallel experiment or comparing with another standard
    circulate or discuss tentatively; test the waters with
    test something under the conditions under which it will actually be used
    type of:
    cerebrate, cogitate, think
    use or exercise the mind or one's power of reason in order to make inferences, decisions, or arrive at a solution or judgments
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week