observer - definition and synonyms

noun [countable] 

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  1. 1
    someone whose opinions are broadcast or published because they know a lot about a particular subject

    Many political observers believe that the election is already decided.

    observer of:

    He was a witty and cynical observer of the social scene.

    1. a.
      someone who visits a place officially to make sure that something is done fairly and correctly
      foreign/outside/military/independent observers:

      Foreign observers declared the elections fair.

    2. b.
      someone who is present at an event but takes no active part

      I was invited to attend their conference as an observer.

  2. 2
    someone who looks at something as their job or as part of an experiment

    A trained observer can scan the images in minutes.

  3. 3
    someone who sees or notices something
    casual observer (=someone not paying much attention):

    The most casual observer would have noticed his strange behaviour.