de·​ride di-ˈrīd How to pronounce deride (audio)
derided; deriding

transitive verb

: to laugh at or insult contemptuously
got derided by a carnival clown
: to subject to usually bitter or contemptuous ridicule or criticism
politicians deriding their opponents
: to express a lack of respect or approval of
were derided as the weaker sex
derider noun
deridingly adverb

Did you know?

Deride is a combination of the prefix de- ("make lower") and ridēre, a Latin verb meaning "to laugh." Ridēre echoes in other English words as well, some common and some obscure. In the former category we have ridicule and ridiculous. Ridicule functions as both verb ("to make fun of") and noun ("the act of making fun of"), while ridiculous describes what arouses or deserves ridicule or mockery. Obscure ridēre words include arride (it has an obsolete meaning of "to smile or laugh at," and also means "to please, gratify, or delight") and irrision, a synonym of derision, the close noun relation of deride. Also in the category of obscure ridēre words is risorius; this medical term refers to a narrow band of facial muscle fibers that reach to the corners of the mouth to make smiling possible.

Choose the Right Synonym for deride

ridicule, deride, mock, taunt mean to make an object of laughter of.

ridicule implies a deliberate often malicious belittling.

consistently ridiculed everything she said

deride suggests contemptuous and often bitter ridicule.

derided their efforts to start their own business

mock implies scorn often ironically expressed as by mimicry or sham deference.

youngsters began to mock the helpless wino

taunt suggests jeeringly provoking insult or challenge.

hometown fans taunted the visiting team

Examples of deride in a Sentence

my brothers derided our efforts, but were forced to eat their words when we won first place
Recent Examples on the Web And Democrats have likewise derided the effort, calling the impeachment a political stunt with no constitutional basis. Kaia Hubbard, CBS News, 13 Feb. 2024 As the documents circulated, commenters derided the idea for being not just unusual, but cringe. Angela Chen, New York Times, 13 Feb. 2024 The 2010 Hot 100 No. 1 remains an extremely contentious song within his discography, with many fans deriding it as a regrettable EDM-era throwaway and other fans telling those fans to hush and just fist-pump along with the hook. Stephen Daw, Billboard, 13 Feb. 2024 Kelly’s critics derided his refusal to fully embrace the importance of name, image and likeness endeavors, not to mention high school recruiting, though Kelly continued to recruit until shortly before his departure. Ben Bolch, Los Angeles Times, 9 Feb. 2024 When the veterans of that war returned, finding their nation in ruin and their service questioned and derided, Wisecarver discovered fertile political soil in their grievances. Elliot Ackerman, WIRED, 5 Feb. 2024 Peter Angelos was frequently derided in the baseball press as one of the worst team owners. Dan Rodricks, Baltimore Sun, 1 Feb. 2024 In the teeming crowd in front of Argentina’s National Congress last week, Alicia Ambrosi weaved her way around banners and placards pleading for more economic assistance – and deriding a new president intent on fundamentally changing how the country works. Natalie Alcoba, The Christian Science Monitor, 29 Jan. 2024 Historically, Cuban American politicians whom the Cuban government identifies as political adversaries have usually been derided by state media, but only women seem to have been called names or compared to animals. Nora Gámez Torres, Miami Herald, 2 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'deride.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin deridēre, from de- + ridēre to laugh

First Known Use

circa 1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of deride was circa 1526


Dictionary Entries Near deride

Cite this Entry

“Deride.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


de·​ride di-ˈrīd How to pronounce deride (audio)
derided; deriding
: to laugh at scornfully : make fun of
derider noun
deridingly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on deride

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