\ˈdān \

Definition of deign 

intransitive verb

: to condescend reluctantly and with a strong sense of the affront to one's superiority that is involved : stoop would not even deign to talk to him One iconoclastic architect, for example, doesn't deign to speak of bathrooms.— Carol Vogel

transitive verb

: to condescend to give or offer never so much as deigning a glance— George Meredith

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Synonyms for deign


condescend, stoop

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Examples of deign in a Sentence

I wouldn't deign to answer that absurd accusation.

Recent Examples on the Web

Suits may be going the way of the dodo and sneakers may be infiltrating the cubicle, but can a man at least deign to tuck in his shirt on weekdays? Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Please, Men of the World, Tuck in Your Shirts," 29 Aug. 2018 In other bad news of the week, on Monday President Trump signed a $716 billion defense policy bill named for John McCain but did not deign to mention the senator’s name even once. Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "No Parades for A President "Drunk on Power"," 19 Aug. 2018 The White House maintains the Eagles organization was disingenuous by not saying until late in the game that few players would deign to be there. Erik Brady, USA TODAY, "Trump has it wrong: Eagles disrespect their president, not their country," 5 June 2018 Anno 1800 Hey, that new Anno game! Ubisoft didn’t deign to show it at its own press conference, but Anno 1880 made an appearance at the PC Gaming Show and that’s good enough for me. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "PC Gaming Show at E3 2018: Yakuza 0, Warframe: The Sacrifice, Star Control Origins, and a Jaws sim," 11 June 2018 So when the universe deigned to help out, astronomers jumped at the chance. Joshua Sokol, Scientific American, "Gravitational Waves Reveal the Hearts of Neutron Stars," 5 June 2018 This has been going on for years, and every once in a while, one half of the power couple actually deigns to respond., "Will Smith Addresses The Divorce Rumors That Have Plagued Him & Jada For Years," 24 May 2018 Sentient brands: Social media has no shortage of frustrations, but one of its more insidious developments is multimillion-dollar companies deigning to speak with potential customers as if the corporations were people. Chris Barton,, "Overrated/Underrated: Richard Ayoade's twisted travel show, and how does a brand's voice sound?," 4 May 2018 None of the Home Nations deigned to even try and qualify either - but the far more interesting story comes from one of the federations who did send a team., "World Cup Countdown: 19 Weeks to Go - Remembering Egypt's Trailblazers of 1934," 8 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deign.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of deign

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for deign

Middle English, from Anglo-French deigner, from Latin dignare, dignari, from dignus worthy — more at decent

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Dictionary Entries near deign





Dei gratia

Dei judicium


Statistics for deign

Last Updated

19 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deign

The first known use of deign was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for deign



English Language Learners Definition of deign

: to do something that you think you should not have to do because you are too important


\ˈdān \
deigned; deigning

Kids Definition of deign

: to do something a person considers below his or her dignity The teenager deigned to play with his little cousin.

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More from Merriam-Webster on deign

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with deign

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deign

Spanish Central: Translation of deign

Nglish: Translation of deign for Spanish Speakers

Comments on deign

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a nest or breeding place

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