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Alternative formsEdit


17th century, from Latin praedīcere (to mention beforehand) (perfect passive participle praedictus), from prae (before) + dīcere (to say). Cognate to predicate. Equivalent to Germanic forespeak, foretell.


  • IPA(key): /pɹɪˈdɪkt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪkt


predict (third-person singular simple present predicts, present participle predicting, simple past and past participle predicted)

  1. (transitive) To make a prediction: to forecast, foretell, or estimate a future event on the basis of knowledge and reasoning; to prophesy a future event on the basis of mystical knowledge or power.
    2000, J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, xiii.
    Professor Trelawney kept predicting Harry’s death, which he found extremely annoying.
    2012, Jeremy Bernstein, "A Palette of Particles" in American Scientist, Vol. 100, No. 2, p. 146
    The physics of elementary particles in the 20th century was distinguished by the observation of particles whose existence had been predicted by theorists sometimes decades earlier.
  2. (transitive, of theories, laws, etc.) To imply.
    • 1886, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, 177. 338
      It is interesting to see how clearly theory predicts the difference between the ascending and descending curves of a dynamo.
  3. (intransitive) To make predictions.
    • 1652, J. Gaule, Πυς-μαντια the mag-astro-mancer, 196
      The devil can both predict and make predictors.
  4. (transitive, military, rare) To direct a ranged weapon against a target by means of a predictor.
    • 1943, L. Cheshire, Bomber Pilot, iii. 57
      They're predicting us now; looks like a barrage.


Related termsEdit



predict (plural predicts)

  1. (obsolete) A prediction.

Further readingEdit

  • predict” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2019.

Middle FrenchEdit



  1. past participle of predire