de·​ri·​sive di-ˈrī-siv How to pronounce derisive (audio)
-ˈri-siv How to pronounce derisive (audio)
: 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
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 derisive videos and comments are something that the campaign sees as normal when engaging on any social media platform. Anjali Huynh, New York Times, 26 Mar. 2024 Vancouver outshot Chicago 12-1 in the opening period and held Chicago without a shot until Seth Jones fired on Demko during a power play with 30 seconds left, prompting a derisive cheer from the crowd. Matt Carlson, USA TODAY, 14 Feb. 2024 Fans entertained themselves with The Wave while the two super middleweights plodded in the ring, then some expressed themselves with derisive chants. José M. Romero, The Arizona Republic, 28 Jan. 2024 Many young professionals embraced the idea, filling social platforms with sympathetic declarations before they, in turn, weathered a derisive backlash. Cal Newport, The New Yorker, 27 Dec. 2023 Just Breathe: Macchiarini’s antics in this episode earn a derisive sniff. Vulture, 21 Dec. 2023 Video From The New Yorker To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Meanwhile, Fennell lavishes gleefully derisive attention on the splendiferous absurdities of the mansion and its inhabitants. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 18 Nov. 2023 The term is derisive and refers to local people who have a negative knee-jerk reaction to any project near their community. Justin Worland, TIME, 23 Oct. 2023 At present he is best known for writing derisive, occasionally very funny essays castigating the American left for allowing itself to be gentrified into an effete, self-perpetuating ruling class. Barton Swaim, WSJ, 25 Aug. 2023

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

Word History


see derision

First Known Use

circa 1662, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of derisive was circa 1662

Dictionary Entries Near derisive

Cite this Entry

“Derisive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Apr. 2024.

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