disabuse

play
verb dis·abuse \ˌdis-ə-ˈbyüz\

Definition of disabuse

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to free from error, misconception, or fallacy (see fallacy 2a) was quickly disabused of the idea that anything had changed

disabuse was our Word of the Day on 11/15/2008. Hear the podcast!

Examples of disabuse in a Sentence

  1. let me disabuse you of your foolish notions about married life

Recent Examples of disabuse from the Web

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

Did You Know?

We know the verb "abuse" as a word meaning "to misuse," "to mistreat," or "to revile." But when "disabuse" first appeared in the early 17th century, there was a sense of "abuse," now obsolete, that meant "to deceive." Sir Francis Bacon used that sense, for example, when he wrote in 1605, "You are much abused if you think your virtue can withstand the King's power." The prefix dis- has the sense of undoing the effect of a verb, so it's not surprising that disabuse means "to undeceive." English speakers didn't come up with the idea of joining "dis-" to "abuse" all on their own, however. It was the French who first appended their prefix "dés-" to their verb "abuser." English "disabuse" is modeled after French "désabuser."

Origin and Etymology of disabuse

French désabuser, from dés- dis- + abuser to abuse


DISABUSE Defined for English Language Learners

disabuse

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verb

Definition of disabuse for English Language Learners

  • : to show or convince (someone) that a belief is incorrect



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to fight against or to call in question

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