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o·pin·ion  (-pnyn)
1. A belief or conclusion held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof: The world is not run by thought, nor by imagination, but by opinion (Elizabeth Drew).
2. A judgment based on special knowledge and given by an expert: a medical opinion.
3. A judgment or estimation of the merit of a person or thing: has a low opinion of braggarts.
4. The prevailing view: public opinion.
5. Law A formal statement by a court or other adjudicative body of the legal reasons and principles for the conclusions of the court.

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin opni, opnin-, from opnr, to think.]
Synonyms: opinion, view, sentiment, feeling, belief, conviction, persuasion
These nouns signify something a person believes or accepts as being sound or true. Opinion is applicable to a judgment based on grounds insufficient to rule out the possibility of dispute: A little group of willful men, representing no opinion but their own, have rendered the great Government of the United States helpless and contemptible (Woodrow Wilson).
View stresses individuality of outlook: My view is . . . that freedom of speech means that you shall not do something to people either for the views they have or the views they express (Hugo L. Black).
Sentiment and especially feeling stress the role of emotion as a determinant: If men are to be precluded from offering their sentiments on a matter which may involve the most serious and alarming consequences . . . reason is of no use to us (George Washington). There needs protection . . . against the tyranny of the prevailing opinion and feeling (John Stuart Mill).
A belief is a conclusion to which one subscribes strongly: Our belief in any particular natural law cannot have a safer basis than our unsuccessful critical attempts to refute it (Karl Popper).
Conviction is belief that excludes doubt: the editors own conviction of what, whether interesting or only important, is in the public interest (Walter Lippmann).
Persuasion applies to a confidently held opinion: He had a strong persuasion that Likeman was wrong (H.G. Wells).

opinion  /pnyn/  n. 1 [C;U] what s.o. believes, s.t. not proven in fact: His opinion is that life on earth will improve year by year. 2 [U] any widely held views: Public opinion indicates that the people think the President is doing a good job. 3 [C] a professional judgment, such as one made by a doctor, court, or judge: His doctors medical opinion is that he has curable cancer. 4 to be of the opinion: to believe, possibly with a willingness to change ones mind: He is of the opinion that environmental pollution can be fixed. 5 to hold the opinion: to believe strongly: She holds the opinion that there is no cure for that disease.

Thesaurus: opinion1 a view, idea, conclusion. Ants. a belief, conviction. 2 sentiment, feeling 3 an assessment, conclusion, diagnosis. opinion

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