de·​ny | \ di-ˈnī How to pronounce deny (audio) , dē-\
denied; denying

Definition of deny

transitive verb

1 : to declare untrue denied the allegation
2 : to refuse to admit or acknowledge : disavow denied responsibility for the vandalism
3a : to give a negative answer to denying the petitioners
b : to refuse to grant deny a request was denied a refund
c : to restrain (oneself) from gratification of desires deny himself the foods that he loves
4 archaic : decline
5 : to refuse to accept the existence, truth, or validity of There's no denying her expertise. You can't deny that he's a good singer.

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Other Words from deny

denyingly \ di-​ˈnī-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce denyingly (audio) , dē-​ \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for deny

deny, gainsay, contradict, contravene mean to refuse to accept as true or valid. deny implies a firm refusal to accept as true, to grant or concede, or to acknowledge the existence or claims of. denied the charges gainsay implies disputing the truth of what another has said. no one can gainsay her claims contradict implies an open or flat denial. her account contradicts his contravene implies not so much an intentional opposition as some inherent incompatibility. laws that contravene tradition

Examples of deny in a Sentence

He denied the report that he would be quitting his job. She denies all the charges that have been made against her. The police deny that racism is a problem in the department. Yes, I was there. I don't deny it. The judge denied their request. a government that denies its citizens basic freedoms
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Recent Examples on the Web

Danny denies it, even as Theodora begs him for the truth — probably because, well, there’s simply no way to really explain what’s going on with him and Karl. Kaitlin Reilly,, "Black Mirror, Season 5, Episode 1 Recap: "Striking Vipers"," 6 June 2019 The 25-year-old, however, has firmly denied it, meaning that Arsenal will have to fight with other top European clubs for the signature of Praet., "Arsenal 'Prepare to Launch' £37m Bid for Sampdoria Duo Dennis Praet and Joachim Andersen," 5 June 2019 The complainant's appeal for a third hearing, according to The Times, was denied. Zak Keefer, Indianapolis Star, "Colts were aware of Bobby Okereke sexual assault allegation before drafting Stanford LB," 5 June 2019 Apple has denied it, but the European Union is reportedly probing the matter. Anchorage Daily News, "Facebook, Google and other tech giants to face antitrust investigation by House lawmakers," 4 June 2019 Jordan Siev, one of Mill’s attorneys, said that besides seeking to overturn Brinkley’s 2017 ruling returning him to jail and her June 2018 order denying him a new trial, the rapper wants the appellate court to transfer his case to another judge. Mensah M. Dean,, "Appeals court grants Meek Mill a new hearing," 4 June 2019 Thirteen Newington residents have filed a lawsuit against the town saying that a decision in March to increase the cost of the new town hall by $2.8 million denied them their right to vote on how taxpayer dollars get used. Kathleen Mcwilliams,, "Newington residents sue town over increased town hall costs," 4 June 2019 Private and corporate aircraft and boats will also be denied permission to travel, too, under the new rules. CBS News, "Trump administration puts new restrictions on Cuba travel," 4 June 2019 Longtime property owners Christopher and Theresa Vacik plan to sell the property to Greg and Anna Greenspan, but their request for a front yard setback variance was denied by the Planning Commission in a 4-1 vote on April 9. Thomas Jewell,, "Solon council overturns Planning Commission denial of variance for “Lot 10” on Liberty Road," 4 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deny.' 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 deny

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for deny

Middle English, from Anglo-French deneier, denier, from Latin denegare, from de- + negare to deny — more at negate

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Statistics for deny

Last Updated

8 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deny

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

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More Definitions for deny



English Language Learners Definition of deny

: to say that something is not true
: to refuse to accept or admit (something)
: to refuse to give (something) to someone : to prevent someone from having or receiving (something)


de·​ny | \ di-ˈnī How to pronounce deny (audio) \
denied; denying

Kids Definition of deny

1 : to declare not to be true “Well, they were a lazy lot—that much you can't deny.”— Mary Norton, The Borrowers
2 : to refuse to grant deny a request
3 : to refuse to admit deny guilt
denied; denying

Legal Definition of deny

1 : to declare untrue a party must…admit or deny the allegationsFederal Rules of Civil Procedure Rule 8(b) — compare avoid
2 : to refuse to grant denied the motion for a new trial

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More from Merriam-Webster on deny

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with deny

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deny

Spanish Central: Translation of deny

Nglish: Translation of deny for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deny for Arabic Speakers

Comments on deny

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incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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