dis·​es·​tab·​lish ˌdis-ə-ˈstab-lish How to pronounce disestablish (audio)
disestablished; disestablishing; disestablishes

transitive verb

: to deprive of an established status
especially : to deprive of the status and privileges of an established church
disestablishment noun

Examples of disestablish in a Sentence

efforts to disestablish the Church of England
Recent Examples on the Web But the assertion that bigger brains make for a smarter species may have been disestablished now that scientists have made a harrowing journey into the Rising Star cave and discovered that the species -- which lived about 335,000 to 236,000 years ago -- buried its dead and marked the graves. Julia Jacobo, ABC News, 5 June 2023 Meanwhile, federal prosecutors in Oklahoma are seeing massive increases in caseloads as the result of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year that determined a large swath of eastern Oklahoma remains an Indian reservation because Congress never voted to disestablish it. Alanna Durkin Richer, Star Tribune, 18 Mar. 2021 Massachusetts was the last to disestablish in 1833. Samuel Goldman, The Week, 16 Feb. 2022 During that period of land theft, though, Congress never took the time to disestablish the Creek reservation. Nick Martin, The New Republic, 9 July 2020 When the first case was heard, the justices reached back to 1907 to determine whether Congress, using imprecise language, failed to disestablish the 1866 boundaries of the Indian reservation. Richard Wolf, USA TODAY, 13 Dec. 2019 The twin constitutional pillars of religious liberty in the United States — the free-exercise clause and the establishment clause — don’t just protect liberty by disestablishing religion (by preventing the formation of a state church). David French, National Review, 12 Sep. 2019 The village board voted 5 to 2 in favor of disestablishing the dog park that has divided this Maryland suburb for months. Jessica Contrera, baltimoresun.com, 10 Sep. 2019 It was launched in 1985 and disestablished in 2002 as the Pentagon reorganized in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Washington Post, 29 Aug. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'disestablish.' 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

1598, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of disestablish was in 1598

Dictionary Entries Near disestablish

Cite this Entry

“Disestablish.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disestablish. Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

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