de·​ri·​so·​ry | \ di-ˈrī-sə-rē How to pronounce derisory (audio) , -zə- \

Definition of derisory

1 : expressing derision : derisive
2 : worthy of derision especially : laughably small land could be bought for a derisory sum

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Examples of derisory in a Sentence

a literary snob, she invariably used the derisory term “the boob tube” when referring to television the pawnbroker offered what I regarded as a derisory amount for the diamond ring
Recent Examples on the Web Arsenal are seemingly the latest club to have entered the Harry Maguire saga alongside Manchester United and Manchester City, only to make a derisory transfer enquiry for the Leicester and England centre back well below the Foxes' asking price., "Arsenal Make Harry Maguire Enquiry But Are Wasting Everyone's Time With Embarrassing Offer," 3 July 2019 Now non-Duchenne laughter, along with its dark side, appeared: strategic, calculated, and even derisory and aggressive. Giovanni Sabato, Scientific American, "What’s So Funny? The Science of Why We Laugh," 26 June 2019 While much of the talk is typically derisory, two of late night’s royalty took a different tack Wednesday night. Natasha Bach, Fortune, "'You Would Do an Excellent Job': Stephen Colbert and John Oliver Urge Trump to Speak to Mueller," 8 Feb. 2018

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

1618, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for derisory

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The first known use of derisory was in 1618

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Cite this Entry

“Derisory.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Jul. 2020.

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How to pronounce derisory (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of derisory

: of too little value to be considered seriously : ridiculously small
: expressing a belief that something or someone is ridiculous or without value : expressing derision

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