Definition of dubious in English:


Line breaks: du¦bi|ous
Pronunciation: /ˈdjuːbɪəs


1Hesitating or doubting: I was rather dubious about the whole idea
More example sentences
  • And it is that part that, I think, we are a little dubious about.
  • ‘At first I was a bit dubious about going back to Bradford from Otley, but now I think the move is the best thing that we have ever done,’ he said.
  • ‘People who might be dubious about standing somewhere waiting for a bus may be more encouraged to do so if they know exactly when the bus is due,’ he said.
2Not to be relied upon; suspect: extremely dubious assumptions
More example sentences
  • However, those often rely on dubious assumptions.
  • Such claims, he contends, rely on slippery language and dubious assumptions.
  • Instead, a dubious logic pervades, upon which we base entire networks of conclusions and imperatives.
2.1Morally suspect: timeshare has been brought into disrepute by dubious sales methods
More example sentences
  • I listed at the beginning the most usual procedures used to provide assistance in conception, but deferred discussion of the two methods that are most morally dubious.
  • They weren't always on the side of good, and even when they were, they still regularly made morally dubious judgements, but they were always true to their natures.
  • They are engaged in tax avoidance, which is entirely legal, though you might argue it's morally dubious.
2.2Of questionable value: he holds the dubious distinction of being relegated with every club he has played for
More example sentences
  • In fact, so entrenched was the belief in many quarters that official statistics were of dubious value to social researchers that the view took root that they were virtually worthless.
  • And it spends billions each year in social welfare programs that are endlessly duplicative and of dubious value.
  • When it comes to sharing your faith, gimmicks are of dubious value.


mid 16th century (in sense 2): from Latin dubiosus, from dubium 'a doubt', neuter of dubius 'doubtful'.



More example sentences
  • Lorde frowned dubiously but before he could reply, there came a knock at the door.
  • Much of what Simpson says should encourage self-consciousness about the costs of an unthinking appeal to dubiously concrete subject positions.
  • Well, there's an example of synergy right there, albeit synergy of a negative and dubiously profitable kind.


More example sentences
  • All I got was a stuck record that repeated my misdemeanours in a tone of voice that left me in no doubt as to the dubiousness of my credentials, pedigree and character.
  • My first reaction, frankly, is one of dubiousness.
  • This was probably not the best time to take an online IQ test of dubious scientific value; considering the inherent dubiousness of IQ tests to begin with.

Definition of dubious in: