Simple Definition of debunk
: to show that something (such as a belief or theory) is not true : to show the falseness of (a story, idea, statement, etc.)
Full Definition of debunk
: to expose the sham or falseness of <debunk a legend>
Examples of debunk in a sentence
The article debunks the notion that life exists on Mars.
The results of the study debunk his theory.
Did You Know?
If you guessed that "debunk" has something to do with bunk, meaning "nonsense," you're correct. We started using "bunk" at the beginning of the 20th century. (It derives from a remark made by a Buncombe county, N.C., congressman.) A little less than 25 years later, "debunk" was first used in print for the act of taking the "bunk" out of something. There are plenty of synonyms for "debunk," including "disprove," "rebut," "refute," and the somewhat rarer "confute." Even "falsify" can mean "prove something false," in addition to "make something false." "Debunk" itself often suggests that something is not merely untrue, but also a sham; one can simply disprove a myth, but if it is "debunked," the implication is that it was a grossly exaggerated or foolish claim.
First Known Use of debunk
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