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

Definition of disbelieve

transitive verb

: to hold not worthy of belief : not believe

intransitive verb

: to withhold or reject belief

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Other Words from disbelieve

disbeliever noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for disbelieve



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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 Trump wants voters to forget about or disbelieve the facts of the pandemic. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "Can Biden Make the First Debate About More than Trump?," 29 Sep. 2020 Those who support challenge trials tend to disbelieve the rosy scenario presented publicly by the Trump administration that a vaccine could be just around the corner. Laura Parker, National Geographic, "To find a vaccine for COVID-19, will we have to deliberately infect people?," 16 Sep. 2020 The President spent months insisting that the coronavirus crisis would soon dissipate; now his campaign needed voters to disbelieve the evidence of their own eyes. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "How Trump Could Win," 11 Sep. 2020 Cuomo has emphatically denounced xenophobia and there is no reason to disbelieve his sincerity, but many of his policies, and certainly the cuts in his budget, will further disenfranchise her most vulnerable constituents, many of them Chinese. Leah Carroll, refinery29.com, "Yuh-Line Niou Is Fighting For Chinatown’s Survival," 4 May 2020 To the rescue come the teenagers Mike (Grant Cramer) and Debbie (Suzanne Snyder), who try to convince disbelieving authorities that the murderous bozos aren’t joking. Erik Piepenburg, New York Times, "When Reality Is Scary Enough, These Movies Are Safe Nightmares," 2 Apr. 2020 The disbelieving comments themselves drive engagement, and bump the post’s position in other users’ feeds. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "You Can’t Buy Memes," 28 Feb. 2020 Meier’s study found that when fathers claim alienation, courts are more than twice as likely to disbelieve mothers’ claims of abuse — either child abuse or abuse against the mother — than if the father made no alienation claim. Samantha Schmidt, Washington Post, "‘A gendered trap’: When mothers allege child abuse by fathers, the mothers often lose custody, study shows," 29 July 2019 The stadium held its breath, everyone expecting to see the net bulge, but then came the noise of 40,000 disbelieving groans as Arsenal's captain dragged his shot wide of the post. Matias Grez, CNN, "Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang left distraught after shock miss in dying seconds costs Arsenal," 28 Feb. 2020

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

circa 1644, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for disbelieve

Time Traveler

The first known use of disbelieve was circa 1644

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Cite this Entry

“Disbelieve.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disbelieve. Accessed 25 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for disbelieve


How to pronounce disbelieve (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of disbelieve

formal : to not believe (someone or something)


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

Kids Definition of disbelieve

: to think not to be true or real The jury disbelieved the story.

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