despite

preposition
de·​spite | \ di-ˈspīt How to pronounce despite (audio) \

Definition of despite

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: in spite of played despite an injury

despite

noun

Definition of despite (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : the feeling or attitude of despising someone or something : contempt
2 : malice, spite
3a : an act showing contempt or defiance
b : detriment, disadvantage I know of no government which stands to its obligations, even in its own despite, more solidly …— Sir Winston Churchill
in despite of
: in spite of

despite

verb
despited; despiting

Definition of despite (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 archaic : to treat with contempt
2 obsolete : to provoke to anger : vex

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Examples of despite in a Sentence

Preposition

Many children are shy around strangers, of course, but Jacob's reticence is different. He suffers from a rare childhood disorder … that renders him so anxious in the company of others that he cannot, despite all his efforts, utter a single word. — Kathy Ehrich Dowd et al., People, 18 Feb. 2008 That's exactly what researchers at Texas A & M University have done with Smart Little Lena, a stallion (despite the name) famed for its cow herding skills. — Henry Nicholls, New Scientist, 1-7 Apr. 2006 Despite the thriving trade in manuscripts that occurred throughout the Greek and Roman empires, many plays, poems, and philosophical musings by writers such as Aeschylus, Euripides, Aristophanes, and Sophocles have been lost. Physics Today, June 2005 we went to the party despite the bad weather outside

Noun

pointedly ignored his false friend out of despite sheer despite was the sole reason for her hurtful comments
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Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition

Yet despite the similarity of losing star quarterbacks, these are entirely different situations. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Roethlisberger, Brees injuries shake up NFL playoff races, force hard look at the future," 16 Sep. 2019 The rising rate is driven by the fact that there was a 9% increase in suicides among males, despite a 10% decrease in suicide by females. Jill Wiedemann-west, Twin Cities, "Jill Wiedemann-West: Suicide is a public-health threat — but there are reasons to hope and ways to help," 15 Sep. 2019 Nevertheless … despite the fact Hammond didn’t throw often, his dozen attempts did as much as 43 passes by CU counterpart Steven Montez, who sleepwalked through much of the game. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, "Kiszla: CU Buffs’ bad home loss to Air Force reminds us Pac-12 football is bad football," 14 Sep. 2019 This is despite the fact that more deaths are caused every year by fossil fuels, particularly coal, which is a major contributor to air pollution. James Griffiths, CNN, "China's gambling on a nuclear future, but is it destined to lose?," 13 Sep. 2019 After all, 90 percent of BLM land is open for drilling despite the fact that fracking liquid and other hazardous materials often seep into rivers. Max Holleran, The New Republic, "The Water Wars Are Here," 13 Sep. 2019 This was despite the fact that many opposition candidates had been barred from contending. The Economist, "Politics this week," 12 Sep. 2019 Margevicius was in despite the fact Lamet threw just 74 pitches, because France and Urias drew walks and Lamet’s spot came up in the fifth inning. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Darvish, Cubs strike out Padres’ chances of winning series," 12 Sep. 2019 But despite Trudeau feeling the squeeze, things will also not be particularly easy in this campaign for the Conservatives and Andrew Scheer. Fox News, "Justin Trudeau's Liberals in fight of their lives as Canadian election campaign kicks off," 11 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And then - despite barely stepping over the halfway line - the hosts hit the crossbar and had a shout for a penalty. SI.com, "Rangers: Twitter Reacts to 'Drab' Performance as Lacklustre Gers Limp Past St Mirren," 25 Aug. 2019 There is no doubt her status as a fashion designer has been achieved in part both despite and because of her Spice Girls-marinated celebrity. Vogue, "The Women Designers Who Changed The Way We Dress," 14 Aug. 2019 Irving left James and the Cavaliers in a trade with the despite to lead his own team, but his experience in Boston may have changed his perspective. Lila Bromberg, USA TODAY, "NBA free agency: Possible landing spots for Kyrie Irving," 27 June 2019 However, the report goes on to suggest that the Citizens are still 'ahead' of Carlo Ancelotti's side despite, as aforementioned, the only rumours coming out of his native country. SI.com, "Transfer Rumours: Cancelo in City Talks, Man Utd Eye Ben Yedder, West Ham Bid for Rondon & More," 26 June 2019 Karius made two glaring mistakes during the 3-1 defeat to Madrid in Kiev on Saturday which ultimately cost Liverpool the trophy - despite also making several good stops during the match. SI.com, "Man Utd Legend Slams Loris Karius After UCL Final Nightmare & Urges Liverpool to Sign New Goalkeeper," 28 May 2018 Arsenal playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan still believes that a top four Premier League finish is possible for the Gunners to achieve this season - despite currently being eight points adrift in sixth place with only 11 games left to play. SI.com, "Henrikh Mkhitaryan Still Chasing 'Possible' Top 4 Premier League Finish Ahead of Europa League Win," 23 Feb. 2018 Chelsea are confident that record signing Alvaro Morata will be ready to return to action for the club's trip to Crystal Palace after the international break - despite concerns over a hamstring injury that forced him off against Manchester City. SI.com, "Chelsea Confident That Alvaro Morata Will Recover in Time to Play in Upcoming Crystal Palace Clash," 2 Oct. 2017 Ohio State’s win in Norman last season was likely the clinching argument that earned the Buckeyes their Playoff ticket to the despite not winning their division. Eddie Timanus, USA TODAY, "Week 2 games that have most impact on College Football Playoff," 8 Sep. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Meanwhile in Minnesota, a Star Tribune poll finds that only 5 percent of Democrats believe accusations against DNC Vice Chair Keith Ellison despite much greater and far more detailed evidence against him. Fox News, "New developments in Tucker's Google investigation; Dean Cain on Hollywood rallying behind Kavanaugh's accuser," 22 Sep. 2018 Villa Hills City Council voted 6-2 Tuesday night to allow the sale of 85 acres of now-vacant land - despite considerable opposition from many residents, Enquirer media partner Fox19 reports. Monroe Trombly, Cincinnati.com, "Villa Hills City Council approves sale of land for controversial development," 7 Mar. 2018 Lance Wallnau, a Christian author, claimed God spoke to him and showed him that Trump was like King Cyrus, who followed God’s will despite being a pagan. Colby Itkowitz, Washington Post, "‘Raised up by God’: Televangelist Paula White compares Trump to Queen Esther," 23 Aug. 2017 ON TRACK’ DESPITE LOSSES Minnesota’s primary problem this season has been an inability to hold leads. Jace Frederick, Twin Cities, "Timberwolves get easy shots thanks to ‘Miami’ set," 9 Jan. 2017 Asher ready despite layoff: Right-hander Alec Asher has appeared in just two games since making his Orioles debut with a quality start April 15, pitching one inning April 23 and 26. Jon Meoli, baltimoresun.com, "Orioles notes: Closer Zach Britton expects to be activated Tuesday; Asher ready for start Tuesday," 1 May 2017

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

Preposition

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for despite

Noun, Preposition, and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French despit, from Latin despectus, from despicere — see despise

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Learn More about despite

Statistics for despite

Last Updated

12 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for despite

The first known use of despite was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for despite

despite

preposition

English Language Learners Definition of despite

: without being prevented by (something)

despite

preposition
de·​spite | \ di-ˈspīt How to pronounce despite (audio) \

Kids Definition of despite

: in spite of The quarterback played despite an injury.

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More from Merriam-Webster on despite

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with despite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for despite

Spanish Central: Translation of despite

Nglish: Translation of despite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of despite for Arabic Speakers

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