dis·​miss | \ dis-ˈmis How to pronounce dismiss (audio) \
dismissed; dismissing; dismisses

Definition of dismiss

transitive verb

1 : to permit or cause to leave dismiss the visitors Class is dismissed.
2 : to remove from position or service : discharge dismissed the thievish servant
3a : to reject serious consideration of dismissed the thought
b law : to put out of judicial consideration : refuse to hear or hear further in court dismiss all charges This case is dismissed.
4 : to put out (a batsman) in cricket

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Other Words from dismiss

dismission \ dis-​ˈmi-​shən How to pronounce dismission (audio) \ noun

Examples of dismiss in a Sentence

I don't think we should dismiss the matter lightly. The students were dismissed early because of the snowstorm. Several employees were recently dismissed.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In their court filings, the city’s lawyers have asked the judge to dismiss the lawsuit. Lolly Bowean, chicagotribune.com, "Fate of Obama Presidential Center could be determined by outcome of Tuesday hearing," 10 June 2019 The court denied three different Google motions to dismiss the lawsuit, moving the case into the discovery phase. Levi Sumagaysay, The Mercury News, "Google discrimination case first brought by James Damore can proceed," 7 June 2019 The pleading comes just a week after Nessel's office filed a brief on behalf of Whitmer and the State Board of Education urging the court to dismiss the lawsuit on technical grounds. John Wisely, Detroit Free Press, "Nessel splits with Whitmer, pushes for constitutional right to adequate education," 7 June 2019 Defense lawyers argued for the case to be dismissed after discovering prosecutors secretly tracked their emails without court approval. CBS News, "Judge refuses to drop war crimes case against Navy SEAL," 7 June 2019 Most Afrikaners, even on the far right, have largely dismissed the idea of a Volkstaat, says Christi van der Westhuizen, a sociologist and professor at Nelson Mandela University. Gregory Barber, WIRED, "Inside an All-White Town’s Divisive Experiment With Cryptocurrency," 6 June 2019 He was dismissed without Arizona general manager Steve Keim even talking to him, Rosen said. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: Here’s the good news of Josh Rosen not wowing Dolphins (or anyone) out the gates | Commentary," 6 June 2019 Prosecutors agreed to dismiss Fowler’s remaining charges, which include neglect of a dependent resulting in death and neglect of a dependent, at sentencing in exchange for Fowler’s guilty plea, according to the deal. Michelle L. Quinn, Post-Tribune, "Sentencing delayed for Gary mom in girl's fatal shooting," 4 June 2019 After the Obama administration sought unsuccessfully to dismiss the case, a federal judge in Oregon scheduled a trial last fall. Bob Egelko, SFChronicle.com, "Young people suing government over climate change try to move suit forward," 4 June 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dismiss

Middle English, modification of Latin dimissus, past participle of dimittere, from dis- + mittere to send

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Statistics for dismiss

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dismiss

The first known use of dismiss was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for dismiss



English Language Learners Definition of dismiss

: to decide not to think about or consider (something or someone)
: to send (someone) away : to cause or allow (someone) to leave
: to officially make (someone) leave a job : to end the employment or service of (someone)


dis·​miss | \ dis-ˈmis How to pronounce dismiss (audio) \
dismissed; dismissing

Kids Definition of dismiss

1 : to allow or cause to leave dismiss a class
2 : to remove from a job or position She dismissed her assistant.
3 : to decide not to think about He dismissed the criticism.


transitive verb

Legal Definition of dismiss

1 : to remove from position or service dismissed the employee
2 : to bring about or order the dismissal of (an action) the suit was dismissed

intransitive verb

: to bring about or order a dismissal the plaintiff moved to dismiss

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More from Merriam-Webster on dismiss

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dismiss

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dismiss

Spanish Central: Translation of dismiss

Nglish: Translation of dismiss for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dismiss for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dismiss

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showing courage and determination

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