dismay

verb
dis·​may | \ dis-ˈmā How to pronounce dismay (audio) , diz-\
dismayed; dismaying

Definition of dismay

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cause to lose courage or resolution (as because of alarm or fear) must not let ourselves be dismayed by the task before us
2 : upset, perturb were dismayed by the condition of the building

dismay

noun

Definition of dismay (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : sudden loss of courage or resolution from alarm or fear watched with dismay as flames engulfed their home
2a : sudden disappointment announced her retirement, much to the dismay of her fans
b : perturbation sense 1 expressed dismay at his strange behavior

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Other Words from dismay

Verb

dismayingly \ -​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce dismayingly (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for dismay

Verb

dismay, appall, horrify, daunt mean to unnerve or deter by arousing fear, apprehension, or aversion. dismay implies that one is disconcerted and at a loss as to how to deal with something. dismayed at the size of the job appall implies that one is faced with that which perturbs, confounds, or shocks. I am appalled by your behavior horrify stresses a reaction of horror or revulsion. was horrified by such wanton cruelty daunt suggests a cowing, disheartening, or frightening in a venture requiring courage. a cliff that would daunt the most intrepid climber

Examples of dismay in a Sentence

Verb

Her choice of career dismays her parents. the imposing climb up the mountain dismayed us even before we got started

Noun

His comments were met with cries of dismay. They watched in dismay as the house burned. Much to the dismay of her fans, she announced her retirement immediately after the book's release. To my dismay, I did not get chosen for the job. We listened with dismay to the news of the accident.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The jury ends up deadlocked, meaning that the judge can declare a mistrial, but Archie is dismayed by the prospect of a whole new trial. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Archie's already made a terrible decision.," 11 Oct. 2018 Since then, Messi has skipped the national team’s friendly games and there are reports that he is still dismayed by Argentina’s poor performance in Russia. Debora Rey, The Seattle Times, "Copa Libertadores final: A sign of Argentina’s decadence," 5 Dec. 2018 The Evening Standard report that Moyes was dismayed by the poor structure in West Ham's scouting network. SI.com, "David Moyes Contract Talks With West Ham 'on Hold' With Irons Eyeing New Head of Recruitment," 19 Apr. 2018 But now local Democrats are dismayed as Shalala is struggling to put away her Republican rival, a popular former Spanish-language television newswoman named Maria Elvira Salazar. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Fox News Power Rankings: Dean Heller, survivalist," 19 Sep. 2018 Mogadishu residents have been dismayed by the car bombings that occur despite multiple checkpoints and hundreds of soldiers inspecting vehicles entering the city. Abdi Guled, The Seattle Times, "6 dead in blast at district headquarters in Somali capital," 10 Sep. 2018 Many Beltline supports have been dismayed the project didn’t receive funding to complete the entire transit loop in the transit system’s expansion plan released earlier this year. Scott Trubey, ajc, "Source: Beltline CEO McGowan likely to take top Seattle recruiting job," 4 July 2018 As social media platforms continue to stage increasingly tangled culture wars, and personal data is siphoned up at every possible turn to feed advertising networks, Berners-Lee is rightfully dismayed that the Web is in poor health. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "Tim Berners-Lee Wants a 'Magna Carta' to Save the Modern Internet. He's Way Too Late.," 8 Nov. 2018 But the wave of mail bombs targeting prominent Democrats this week has angered and dismayed some of the people affected personally by past acts of political violence in the United States. David Crary, The Seattle Times, "Bomb scare rattles those touched by past political violence," 27 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In multiple media reports over two days, the family members of those who were killed have expressed dismay over the case’s outcome. Matt Stevens, New York Times, "2 Men Plead No Contest in Oakland Ghost Ship Fire That Killed 36," 3 July 2018 Meanwhile, several human rights groups expressed dismay over a letter sent to them by Haley that blamed them in part for Washington’s withdrawal from the council. Washington Post, "UN, Russia call on US to rethink Human Rights Council move," 21 June 2018 After a brief stint in college, Bertie spent some time in military training with mediocre results, much to his parents' dismay. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "What Was Queen Victoria Like as a Mother?," 13 Jan. 2019 But what is accepted with grim resignation at the detox ward is a source of deep dismay for medical experts. Michelle Weber, Longreads, "You’re Not Clean Until You’re 110% Clean," 9 July 2018 There is dismay, too, over the university’s response to the allegations over the years. Susan Svrluga, Washington Post, "‘Disgraceful’: Growing pressure on Michigan State’s president to resign in wake of Nassar sex-abuse scandal," 15 June 2018 The captain froze in dismay but had the good grace to go down with the ship; the chairman of the White Star Line, J. Bruce Ismay, got onto one of the lifeboats and survived, somewhat to his shame. Lance Morrow, WSJ, "Did Chivalry Go Down With the Titanic?," 14 Dec. 2018 YouTuber Haylee Aníse took to Twitter to express her dismay over the launch. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "People Are Upset With Beautyblender for Its New Bounce Foundation's Shade Range and Swatches," 30 July 2018 The storefront's window displays have been cleaned out, as customers hankering for a Knudsen's treat pull in and out of the parking lot in dismay. Aleanna Siacon, Detroit Free Press, "Knudsen's Danish Bakery in North Rosedale Park shuts after 95 years," 4 May 2018

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

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dismay

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French desmaier, from des- dis- + -maier, from Vulgar Latin *-magare, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German magan to be able — more at may

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Learn More about dismay

Dictionary Entries near dismay

dismantler

dismask

dismast

dismay

dismayedness

dismayful

disme

Statistics for dismay

Last Updated

4 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dismay

The first known use of dismay was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for dismay

dismay

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dismay

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause (someone) to feel very worried, disappointed, or upset

dismay

noun

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

: a strong feeling of being worried, disappointed, or upset

dismay

verb
dis·​may | \ dis-ˈmā How to pronounce dismay (audio) \
dismayed; dismaying

Kids Definition of dismay

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to feel worry, disappointment, fear, or shock … I was dismayed to see what a mess my guests had made of my tree house.— Jean Craighead George, My Side of the Mountain

dismay

noun

Kids Definition of dismay (Entry 2 of 2)

: a feeling of fear, disappointment, shock, or worry We listened with dismay to the bad news.

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More from Merriam-Webster on dismay

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dismay

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dismay

Spanish Central: Translation of dismay

Nglish: Translation of dismay for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dismay for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dismay

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