dis·​be·​lieve ˌdis-bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce disbelieve (audio)
disbelieved; disbelieving; disbelieves

transitive verb

: to hold not worthy of belief : not believe

intransitive verb

: to withhold or reject belief
disbeliever noun

Examples of disbelieve in a Sentence

Several jurors disbelieved the witness's testimony. many disbelieved the medium's claims that she could communicate with the spirits of the dead
Recent Examples on the Web The words belong to Cassandra, the Trojan prophetess doomed to be disbelieved. Sara Holdren, Vulture, 25 Jan. 2024 The Killing of Tupac Shakur explores early conspiracy theories about Tupac’s death and includes a photo from the autopsy that some disbelieving fans tore from its pages. John L. Smith, Rolling Stone, 25 Jan. 2024 Because so many of them have come to disbelieve anything Israeli officials say, there is a reflex to discount reports of atrocities or hostage testimonies. David Remnick, The New Yorker, 14 Jan. 2024 Cue the hilarious fish-out-of-water sequences in which Flynt, who’s still in excellent physical condition, tries out for a skeptical coach (Rob Corddry, nicely underplaying) who finally agrees to give him a shot, and meets his disbelieving teammates, all of whom are nearly 40 years his junior. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, 22 Nov. 2023 Others choose to simply disbelieve the harmfulness of lead. Martin Schiavenato, The Conversation, 30 Aug. 2023 Learning to disbelieve our own reality is often disguised as cooperating with our parents or guardians. Robin Stern and Marc Brackett, Anchorage Daily News, 25 July 2023 As she’s first disbelieved, then charged without outright fabrication, Salomé’s film pivots from itchy whistleblower thriller to irate courtroom drama, with institutional misogyny as its binding thread. Guy Lodge, Variety, 24 July 2023 Millions of Americans seemed either to disbelieve what government officials were telling them about COVID or to regard public-health measures like vaccines and mask mandates as encroachments on their liberty. Louis Menand, The New Yorker, 17 July 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1644, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of disbelieve was circa 1644

Dictionary Entries Near disbelieve

Cite this Entry

“Disbelieve.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disbelieve. Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


dis·​be·​lieve ˌdis-bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce disbelieve (audio)
: to think not to be true or real : fail to believe
disbelieved the witness's testimony
disbeliever noun

More from Merriam-Webster on disbelieve

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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