Guess (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Guessed (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Guessing.] [OE. gessen; akin to Dan. gisse, Sw. gissa, Icel. gizha, D. gissen: cf. Dan. giette to guess, Icel. geta to get, to guess. Probably originally, to try to get, and akin to E. get. See Get.]


To form an opinion concerning, without knowledge or means of knowledge; to judge of at random; to conjecture.

First, if thou canst, the harder reason guess. Pope.


To judge or form an opinion of, from reasons that seem preponderating, but are not decisive.

We may then guess how far it was from his design. Milton.

Of ambushed men, whom, by their arms and dress, To be Taxallan enemies I guess. Dryden.


To solve by a correct conjecture; to conjecture rightly; as, he who guesses the riddle shall have the ring; he has guessed my designs.


To hit upon or reproduce by memory.


Tell me their words, as near as thou canst guess them. Shak.


To think; to suppose; to believe; to imagine; -- followed by an objective clause.

Not all together; better far, I guess, That we do make our entrance several ways. Shak.

But in known images of life I guess The labor greater. Pope.

Syn. -- To conjecture; suppose; surmise; suspect; divine; think; imagine; fancy. -- To Guess, Think, Reckon. Guess denotes, to attempt to hit upon at random; as, to guess at a thing when blindfolded; to conjecture or form an opinion on hidden or very slight grounds: as, to guess a riddle; to guess out the meaning of an obscure passage. The use of the word guess for think or believe, although abundantly sanctioned by good English authors, is now regarded as antiquated and objectionable by discriminating writers. It may properly be branded as a colloguialism and vulgarism when used respecting a purpose or a thing about which there is no uncertainty; as, I guess I 'll go to bed.


© Webster 1913.

Guess, v. i.

To make a guess or random judgment; to conjecture; -- with at, about, etc

This is the place, as well as I may guess. Milton.


© Webster 1913.

Guess, n.

An opinion as to anything, formed without sufficient or decisive evidence or grounds; an attempt to hit upon the truth by a random judgment; a conjecture; a surmise.

A poet must confess His art 's like physic -- but a happy guess. Dryden.


© Webster 1913.

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