doubting


Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

doubt

 (dout)
v. doubt·ed, doubt·ing, doubts
v.tr.
1. To be undecided or skeptical about: began to doubt some accepted doctrines.
2. To tend to disbelieve; distrust: doubts politicians when they make sweeping statements.
3. To regard as unlikely: I doubt that we'll arrive on time.
4. Archaic To suspect; fear.
v.intr.
To be undecided or skeptical.
n.
1.
a. The state of being uncertain about the truth or reliability of something. See Synonyms at uncertainty.
b. often doubts A feeling of uncertainty or distrust: had doubts about his ability.
2. A point about which one is uncertain or skeptical: reassured me by answering my doubts.
3. The condition of being unsettled or unresolved: an outcome still in doubt.
Idioms:
beyond/without doubt
Without question; certainly; definitely.
no doubt
1. Certainly.
2. Probably.

[Middle English douten, from Old French douter, from Latin dubitāre, to waver; see dwo- in Indo-European roots.]

doubt′er n.
Usage Note: The choice of what conjunction to use following doubt and doubtful is a perennial usage problem. When doubt and doubtful indicate strong uncertainty, the Usage Panel prefers whether and that over if. In our 2008 survey, 51 percent indicated that they would use that, while 43 percent preferred whether in the following sentence: At one time it was doubtful [that/whether/if] the company could recover from its financial difficulties, but the government loan seems to have helped. Only 6 percent said they would favor if in this sentence, probably because if has a more informal tone. When the expectation for the outcome is negative, that tends to be used. Some 86 percent of the Panel prefer that in the sentence I doubt [that/whether/if] it will rain tomorrow (where the expectation is that it probably won't rain), with whether getting the preference of only 6 percent and if getting 7 percent. Note that, in certain kinds of sentences, the choice of conjunction can carry subtle differences in implication. That is the best choice when the truth of the clause following doubt is assumed, as in negative sentences and questions. Thus I never doubted for a minute that I would be rescued implies "I was certain that I would be rescued." By the same token, Do you doubt that you will be paid? may be understood as a rhetorical question meaning "Surely you believe that you will be paid," whereas Do you doubt whether you will be paid? expresses a genuine request for information (and might be followed by Because if you do, you should make the client post a bond). Note that it is also acceptable to omit that in these sentences: I doubt she will accept the nomination. In other cases, however, this distinction between whether and that is not always observed. · When doubt is negated to indicate belief or certainty, the clause following doubt is sometimes introduced with but that or simply but, as in I do not doubt but that they will come. This construction has been used by many fine writers, but some critics object to its use in formal writing. Dropping the but easily solves this problem. See Usage Notes at but, if.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.doubting - marked by or given to doubtdoubting - marked by or given to doubt; "a skeptical attitude"; "a skeptical listener"
distrustful - having or showing distrust; "a man of distrustful nature"; "my experience...in other fields of law has made me distrustful of rules of thumb generally"- B.N.Cardozo; "vigilant and distrustful superintendence"- Thomas Jefferson

doubting

adjective
Lacking trust or confidence:
Translations
References in classic literature ?
I know not that their delivery is at hand," returned the doubting David; "the leader of these savages is possessed of an evil spirit that no power short of Omnipotence can tame.
A fox, startled from his sleep by her light footstep on the leaves, looked inquisitively at Pearl, as doubting whether it were better to steal off, or renew his nap on the same spot.
And, after signing the papers, off I went; nothing doubting but that I had done a good morning's work, and that the Pequod was the identical ship that Yojo had provided to carry Queequeg and me round the Cape.
But then there were some sceptical Greeks and Romans, who, standing out from the orthodox pagans of their times, equally doubted the story of Hercules and the whale, and Arion and the dolphin; and yet their doubting those traditions did not make those traditions one whit the less facts, for all that.
To press the matter would have seemed to be doubting his word, and never in their lives had any one of them ever spoken to a person of the class called "gentleman" except with deference and humility.
Shelby, nothing doubting, from her knowledge of Chloe's manner, that she had heard every word of the conversation that had passed between her and her husband.
Now if you consider that everybody believed that, and not only believed it, but never even dreamed of doubting it, you will easily understand that there was not a person in all Britain that would not have walked fifty miles to get a sight of me.
The old man patted her on the head, and smiled a doubting smile, but he honored her for her brave faith, nevertheless.