de·​ri·​sive | \ di-ˈrī-siv How to pronounce derisive (audio) , -ziv; -ˈri-ziv, -ˈri-siv How to pronounce derisive (audio) \

Definition of derisive

: expressing or causing contemptuous ridicule or scorn : expressing or causing derision derisive laughter Given such follies …, it's easy to be derisive of Jerry Lewis …— James Wolcott

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from derisive

derisively adverb
derisiveness noun

Examples of derisive in a Sentence

the derisive performances of some of the singers on the talent show
Recent Examples on the Web The character of Henry may be derisive, impious, cantankerous, even contemptuous, but Carax treats both the story and especially the actor reverently and deferentially. Richard Brod, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The loud booing began when Houston’s lineup was introduced, and the derisive chants soon followed. Joe Reedy, ajc, 4 Aug. 2021 The loud booing began when Houston’s lineup was introduced, and the derisive chants soon followed. Joe Reedy, Chron, 4 Aug. 2021 Their arguments echoed a statement from Donald Trump, the former president, who called Republicans derisive nicknames for working with Democrats. Compiled Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 30 July 2021 Lawmakers and advocates say the derisive language used to describe the pandemic by some politicians, including former President Donald Trump, helped inflame the anti-Asian American sentiment. Nicholas Wu, USA TODAY, 11 Mar. 2021 The idyllic scenes don’t square with the derisive language used decades ago to keep people of color out of the neighborhood. Washington Post, 22 Oct. 2020 Yet the practice of ridicule used since the 1950s and the ease of repeating derisive mocking comments by media got pretty old. Star Tribune, 11 July 2021 Much of the reporting about Tipton was prurient, skeptical, and derisive. Richard Brod, The New Yorker, 16 July 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of derisive

circa 1662, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for derisive

see derision

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About derisive

Time Traveler for derisive

Time Traveler

The first known use of derisive was circa 1662

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near derisive




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for derisive

Last Updated

18 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Derisive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on derisive

Nglish: Translation of derisive for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!