dis·​please (ˌ)dis-ˈplēz How to pronounce displease (audio)
displeased; displeasing; displeases

transitive verb

: to incur the disapproval or dislike of especially by annoying
their gossip displeases her
: to be offensive to
abstract art displeases him

intransitive verb

: to give displeasure
behavior calculated to displease

Examples of displease in a Sentence

her coworkers' tendency to pry displeased her
Recent Examples on the Web This small-mindedness profoundly displeases Marina, who nonetheless sidesteps most third-rail subjects, including Russia, China, and Gaza. Virginia Heffernan, WIRED, 14 Feb. 2024 Depth chart Christian Wilkins ▪ Skinny: Aside from a multi-week hold-in during training camp — showing up to practice to avoid daily fines but not participating — Wilkins didn’t do much to show he was displeased by his lack of a new contract. Daniel Oyefusi, Miami Herald, 11 Feb. 2024 Megan Gustafson, who was Iowa’s all-time scoring leader before Clark eclipsed her, recalled visiting a practice last fall, when a scrimmage referee’s officiating had already displeased Clark. Matt Flegenheimer, New York Times, 6 Feb. 2024 Exploring ordeals and absurdities under South Africa’s apartheid system of racial separation, the book was based on his two reporting tours in Johannesburg, the first in 1965-66, when he was expelled after 11 months by a government displeased with his work, and a second from 1980 to 1983. Robert D. McFadden, New York Times, 6 Jan. 2024 Beijing abstained from many critical U.N. votes that concerned Iran’s interests, displeasing both Washington and Tehran. Christian Schneider, National Review, 21 Dec. 2023 Canada is home to one of the world’s largest Sikh diaspora communities and is the site of Sikh activism that has displeased the Indian government. Lyric Li, Washington Post, 19 Sep. 2023 By imposing the tariffs on goods from China, the idea was to get China to buy more U.S. goods and change trade policies that displeased the U.S. Alan Wolff, Fortune, 28 Aug. 2023 These witnesses of her that have grown out of her can startle or displease her with the independence—the non-bias—of their observations. Rachel Cusk, Harper's Magazine, 10 Sep. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'displease.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English displesen, from Anglo-French despleisir, desplere, from des- dis- + pleisir to please — more at please

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of displease was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near displease

Cite this Entry

“Displease.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/displease. Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


dis·​please (ˈ)dis-ˈplēz How to pronounce displease (audio)
: to cause to feel disapproval, dislike, or annoyance
was displeased by the delay

More from Merriam-Webster on displease

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