dis·​fig·​ure | \ dis-ˈfi-gyər How to pronounce disfigure (audio) , especially British -ˈfi-gə \
disfigured; disfiguring; disfigures

Definition of disfigure

transitive verb

1 : to impair (as in beauty) by deep and persistent injuries a face disfigured by smallpox
2 obsolete : disguise

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Other Words from disfigure

disfigurement \ dis-​ˈfi-​gyər-​mənt How to pronounce disfigurement (audio) , especially British  -​ˈfi-​gə-​ \ noun

Examples of disfigure in a Sentence

His face was disfigured by a scar. the statue was seriously disfigured by falling rubble during the earthquake
Recent Examples on the Web The procedure, which left patients disfigured if not debilitated, was based on the then-prevailing belief that breast cancer spread directly from the original tumor. Emily Langer, Washington Post, "Bernard Fisher, pioneering breast cancer surgeon-scientist, dies at 101," 23 Oct. 2019 All five children who have come forward about the abuse are permanently disfigured due to the assaults, according to police. Madeline Mitchell, Cincinnati.com, "5 children disfigured; East Price Hill woman admits hitting them with phone cord," 5 Dec. 2019 In 2007, her estranged husband attacked her with a bottle of lye, disfiguring her face beyond recognition and burning 85% of her body. Stephanie Becker, CNN, "Her face transplant is failing. But Carmen Tarleton hasn't lost her optimism," 26 Sep. 2019 Chelsea was disfigured in 2013 when a drunk driver slammed into his car, sparking a fire. Erika Edwards, NBC News, "68-year-old man is the first black patient to receive a face transplant," 24 Oct. 2019 Mobster whose face was disfigured after falling in a vat of acid? Josh Rottenberg, Los Angeles Times, "‘Joker’ ending explained: Director Todd Phillips on fan theories and open questions," 4 Oct. 2019 Mobster whose face was disfigured after falling in a vat of acidImmortal evil being? Josh Rottenberg, chicagotribune.com, "‘Joker’ ending explained: Director Todd Phillips on fan theories and open questions," 4 Oct. 2019 Today, the extensive collection represents 780 plant species, thousands of healthy flowers and blooms, and—of course—disfigured fruit. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Glass Models of Decaying Fruit Set to Go on View After Two Decades in Storage," 29 Aug. 2019 Trump has disfigured the pardon power to reward friends. Mona Charen, National Review, "Accountability in the Trump Administration," 11 Oct. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for disfigure

Middle English, from Anglo-French desfigurer, from des- dis- + figure figure

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Time Traveler for disfigure

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for disfigure

Last Updated

27 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Disfigure.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disfigure. Accessed 24 January 2020.

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More Definitions for disfigure


How to pronounce disfigure (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of disfigure

: to spoil or damage the appearance of (something or someone)


dis·​fig·​ure | \ dis-ˈfi-gyər How to pronounce disfigure (audio) \
disfigured; disfiguring

Kids Definition of disfigure

: to spoil the looks of

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Comments on disfigure

What made you want to look up disfigure? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a feeling of well-being or elation

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