disdain

noun
dis·​dain | \ dis-ˈdān How to pronounce disdain (audio) \

Definition of disdain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a feeling of contempt for someone or something regarded as unworthy or inferior : scorn

disdain

verb
dis·​dain | \ dis-ˈdān How to pronounce disdain (audio) \
disdained; disdaining; disdains

Definition of disdain (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to look on with scorn disdained him as a coward
2 : to refuse or abstain from because of a feeling of contempt or scorn disdained to answer their questions
3 : to treat as beneath one's notice or dignity

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Choose the Right Synonym for disdain

Verb

despise, contemn, scorn, disdain mean to regard as unworthy of one's notice or consideration. despise may suggest an emotional response ranging from strong dislike to loathing. despises cowards contemn implies a vehement condemnation of a person or thing as low, vile, feeble, or ignominious. contemns the image of women promoted by advertisers scorn implies a ready or indignant contempt. scorns the very thought of retirement disdain implies an arrogant or supercilious aversion to what is regarded as unworthy. disdained popular music

Examples of disdain in a Sentence

Noun McCarthy's indifference to accolades and his disdain for grandstanding … turned into a disdain even for being understood. — Louis Menand, New Yorker, 5 Apr. 2004 There is fierce disdain within the Pentagon for the passive U.N. peacekeepers who stood by while thousands were murdered in Bosnia's ethnic cleansing. — Joe Klein, Time, 24 Nov. 2003 But for all its playful love of puns and cool disdain for "suits," the high-tech world is, at heart, a cruel, unforgiving place ruled by the merciless dynamics of the marketplace. — Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, 27 June 2002 He regarded their proposal with disdain. I have a healthy disdain for companies that mistreat their workers. Verb The right eyes him [Thomas Jefferson] suspiciously as a limousine Jacobin so enamored of revolution that he once suggested we should have one every 20 years. The left disdains him as your basic race hypocrite. — Charles Krauthammer, Time, 22 May 2000 Only in our last days on the peninsula (the arm of Antarctica that polar scientists disdain as the "Banana Belt") did we see our first frozen sea … — Kate Ford, Wall Street Journal, 12 June 1998 His vehicle would be a form he both enjoyed and disdained—pulp fiction. — Henry Louis Gates, Jr., New York Times Book Review, 20 Sept. 1992 There is also evidence of epic womanizing that Mr. Schickel mentions but loftily announces that he disdains to tell us about. — Camille Paglia, New York Times Book Review, 21 July 1991 They disdained him for being weak. She disdained to answer their questions.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Some motorists honked and some gave a thumbs up, while other people in vehicles showed disdain with finger or hand gestures. Karie Angell Luc, chicagotribune.com, 15 May 2021 Chauvin showed contemptuous disdain for Floyd's life and human dignity. Paul Callan, CNN, 13 Apr. 2021 Good showed disdain for virus precautions throughout his campaign, opting not to wear a mask or encourage them at his events, and saying businesses should not be restricted in the interest of limited spread. Washington Post, 14 Dec. 2020 In Europe, Biden has pledged to strengthen U.S. alliances and supports NATO, which Trump showed disdain for. John Leicester, Star Tribune, 8 Nov. 2020 What’s behind this enduring fascination with – and thinly veiled disdain for – some Southern American accents? Kathryn Cunningham, al, 27 Aug. 2021 On one side, exasperated, sneering disdain for simple exhortations about confidence and belief; on the other, dismayed defensiveness that the icon of niceness, a statue to positive masculinity, is being tarnished. Kathryn Vanarendonk, Vulture, 25 Aug. 2021 Florida voters are deeply divided over Gov. Ron DeSantis, with Republicans cheering his response to the COVID-19 pandemic and his overall performance and Democrats showing intense disdain. Anthony Man, sun-sentinel.com, 25 Aug. 2021 Our reactions to such series depends a lot on our own socioeconomic status, Deery said, but our impressions typically fall between admiration, disdain or a blend of both. Scottie Andrew, CNN, 15 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Most anglers disdain sheepshead, but if handled properly after they’re caught, the fillets are delicious. cleveland, 2 Sep. 2021 Despite picking up skiing at 29 years old, Mourao fell in love with everything so many of her compatriots disdain. Dave Skretta, Star Tribune, 27 July 2021 Ahuja pledged at her confirmation hearing to rebuild a federal civil service battered during the Trump administration by budget cuts and disdain from many political appointees as a ’'deep state’' of bureaucrats that led to widespread retirements. BostonGlobe.com, 22 June 2021 At the same time, the hints about Asellus' identity could be read completely straight, the attraction to women and disdain for men explained by an infusion of mystic blood. Laine Yuhas, Wired, 4 June 2021 The assertion that the press was too quick to disdain the lab-leak theory because it was touted by ideologically suspect sources — Trump and senators Tom Cotton and Rand Paul, among others — overlooks a few pertinent factors. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 3 June 2021 If politics is the art of the possible, then there are two kinds of radicals: those who disdain all worldly forms of politics, and those who engage in politics in order to change what’s possible. Andrew Marantz, The New Yorker, 24 May 2021 In the wake of the incident, McCloskey and his wife, Patricia, have faced criminal charges, disdain from their neighbors and close scrutiny of their past bouts with the law. Washington Post, 19 May 2021 Over the past two years, a number of brands and retailers have aligned their product offering with a growing group of customers expressing not just disinterest but also disdain for fur. Demetrius Simms, Robb Report, 8 Apr. 2021

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for disdain

Noun

Middle English desdeyne, from Anglo-French desdaign, from desdeigner — see disdain entry 2

Verb

Middle English desdeynen, from Anglo-French desdeigner, dedeigner, from Vulgar Latin *disdignare, from Latin dis- + dignare to deign — more at deign

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Time Traveler for disdain

Time Traveler

The first known use of disdain was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near disdain

disc weeder

disdain

disdainer

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Statistics for disdain

Last Updated

11 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Disdain.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disdain. Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for disdain

disdain

noun

English Language Learners Definition of disdain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a feeling of strong dislike or disapproval of someone or something you think does not deserve respect

disdain

verb

English Language Learners Definition of disdain (Entry 2 of 2)

: to strongly dislike or disapprove of (someone or something)
: to refuse to do (something) because of feelings of dislike or disapproval

disdain

noun
dis·​dain | \ dis-ˈdān How to pronounce disdain (audio) \

Kids Definition of disdain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a feeling of dislike for someone or something considered not good enough She eyed the food with disdain.

Other Words from disdain

disdainful adjective
disdainfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

disdain

verb
disdained; disdaining

Kids Definition of disdain (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to feel dislike for something or someone usually for not being good enough He disdained people he felt were weak.
2 : to refuse because of feelings of dislike She disdained to answer.

More from Merriam-Webster on disdain

Nglish: Translation of disdain for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of disdain for Arabic Speakers

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