dis·​prove (ˌ)dis-ˈprüv How to pronounce disprove (audio)
disproved; disproving; disproves

transitive verb

: to prove to be false or wrong : refute
disprove a theory

Example Sentences

Magellan's circumnavigation of the globe disproved any lingering notions that the earth is flat.
Recent Examples on the Web Although scientists would later disprove it, the brain-damage theory persisted well into the 1960s, as scientists questioned whether a kinetic imbalance caused inattention and hyperactivity in children. Emilie Le Beau Lucchesi, Discover Magazine, 31 Jan. 2022 By returning to the Walt Disney Company and resuming his former role as chief executive officer, Bob Iger will attempt to disprove that maxim. Rebecca Rubin, Variety, 22 Nov. 2022 The team has denied the charges and sent the F.T.C. 102 pages of support documents to disprove the allegations. Jenny Vrentas, New York Times, 10 Nov. 2022 Let this absurdist classic by Douglas Adams disprove that theory. Lizz Schumer, Good Housekeeping, 28 Oct. 2022 The story attempting to disprove Nakashima’s personal experience was characteristic of The Oregonian’s racist coverage of imprisonment during World War II. Beth Nakamura, The Oregonian - OregonLive.com, 26 Oct. 2022 Prickles are thought to have evolved to prevent water loss and to protect the plant from pathogens and injury from animals — although my puppy is determined to disprove that last theory. Rita Perwich, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Sep. 2022 This study doesn't disprove that theory; bats could have more than one reason for staying out of the rain. Valerie Ross, Discover Magazine, 4 May 2011 But this week's bitcoin sell-off came amid a wider market downturn — something that appears to disprove the notion that bitcoin is walled-off from conventional market pressures, analysts say. Rob Wile, NBC News, 14 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'disprove.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French desprover, from des- dis- + prover to prove

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near disprove

Cite this Entry

“Disprove.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disprove. Accessed 6 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


dis·​prove (ˈ)dis-ˈprüv How to pronounce disprove (audio)
: to prove to be false

More from Merriam-Webster on disprove

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