Definition of augur in English:

augur

Line breaks: augur
Pronunciation: /ˈɔːɡə
 
/

verb

[no object] (augur well/badly/ill)
1(Of an event or circumstance) portend a good or bad outcome: the end of the cold war seemed to augur well
More example sentences
  • He said that both sides' willingness to talk augured well for a peaceful outcome.
  • Indeed, to have an operation begin with a helicopter crash does not augur well for its outcome.
  • Those events certainly did not augur well for the success of the project.
Synonyms
bode; portend, herald, be a sign of, be an indication of, be a warning of, warn of, forewarn of, be an omen of, be a harbinger of, foreshadow, presage, indicate, signify, signal, point to, promise, threaten, spell, denote; foretell, forecast, predict, prophesy, prognosticate, divine, foresee
archaic foreshow, previse
Scottish archaic spae
rare vaticinate, auspicate
1.1 [with object] Portend or bode (a specified outcome): they feared that these happenings augured a neo-Nazi revival
More example sentences
  • The move augurs disaster for pastoralism in the sub-continent, it is a mode of violence against the lives and livelihoods of several thousand rural households.
  • Perhaps it augurs a return to the epicene male fashion of Genji's time.
  • Lee does not reckon that much concrete will emerge from the summit but, she adds, ‘I am certain it will augur a new mood in North Korea.’
1.2 [with object] archaic Foresee or predict.
More example sentences
  • Of course, they augured stuff by poking around in crow guts too, so that's how much they knew.

noun

Back to top  
(In ancient Rome) a religious official who observed natural signs, especially the behaviour of birds, interpreting these as an indication of divine approval or disapproval of a proposed action.
More example sentences
  • In the case of the augurs or haruspices of Rome, the animal was sacrificed to permit contemplation of the entrails for prophetic purposes.
  • People called augurs could also be found in the temples.
  • Appropriately, with his head veiled he had the omens taken on the Capitoline Hill, accompanied by augurs and priests, and received the requested signs.
Synonyms

Origin

late Middle English (as a noun): from Latin, 'diviner'.

Usage

The spellings augur (a verb meaning ‘portend a good or bad outcome’, as in this augurs well) and auger (a type of tool used for boring) are sometimes confused, but the two words are quite different in both their present meaning and their origins.

Derivatives

augural

Pronunciation: /ˈɔːɡjʊ(ə)r(ə)l/
adjective ( archaic )
More example sentences
  • The statue clearly indicates that Marsyas, the teacher of augural practice of auspices, arrived in Italy from Asia Minor.
  • Why, we might ask, would the Princeps desire to eliminate any traces of the traditional augural function of this minor deity?

Definition of augur in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day epyllion
Pronunciation: ɪˈpɪlɪən
noun
a narrative poem resembling an epic in style...