repellent

adjective
re·​pel·​lent | \ ri-ˈpe-lənt How to pronounce repellent (audio) \
variants: or less commonly repellant

Definition of repellent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serving or tending to drive away or ward off often used in combination a mosquito-repellent spray
2 : arousing aversion or disgust : repulsive

repellent

noun
variants: or less commonly repellant

Definition of repellent (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that repels especially : a substance that repels insects

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Other Words from repellent

Adjective

repellently adverb

Examples of repellent in a Sentence

Adjective

The candle has a repellent effect on insects. your snobbish behavior towards my friends is so repellent I can't stand to be around you anymore

Noun

a can of insect repellent Coat the exterior with a water repellent.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Suddenly, every slur, insult, and caricature seems like a golden opportunity to commodify and profit from the most repellent sound bites. Sonia K. Katyal, BostonGlobe.com, "The sudden rush of vulgar trademarks," 23 June 2018 Meanwhile, national Republicans have been coping with a Hobbesian choice between losing a Senate seat or tainting themselves by association with a bizarre and repellent Old South character right out of Flannery O’Connor. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Alabama Preview: Turnout Will Win It For Moore or Jones, But Republicans Will Have a Headache Either Way," 11 Dec. 2017 But the tactic became far more effective — indeed, electorally triumphant — when the actions being profiled were so genuinely repellent to much of the country. Berny Belvedere, National Review, "Yes, the Democratic Party’s Polarization Helps Explain Trump’s Rise," 11 Oct. 2017 Nevertheless, the types who surfaced in Charlottesville on Saturday are certainly human beings of the most repellent and disgusting sort, murderous too—pretty much violent, evil sociopaths. WSJ, "Notable & Quotable: The White Supremacist Fringe," 13 Aug. 2017 The history of politically inexperienced, personally repellent third-rate television personalities with anger issues who managed to parlay their fame into high office does not begin with Donald Trump. Kyle Smith, National Review, "Al Franken, Un-Funny Man of the Senate," 7 Aug. 2017 But this documentary posits a revision of food history, chronicling the life of the magnetic, repellent man who changed American dining, then disappeared. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, "9 movies open May 5; our reviewers weigh in," 5 May 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The next year, in early July, Willick fired DeAngelo from the police force after he was arrested for trying to steal a hammer and a can of dog repellent from a Pay 'n Save store by concealing them in his trousers. Anchorage Daily News, "With taunts and guile, the Golden State Killer left a trail of horror," 28 Apr. 2018 He was dismissed after a clerk caught him shoplifting a hammer and a can of dog repellent at a Pay N' Save Store in Citrus Heights, according to local reports at the time. Paige St. John, latimes.com, "Golden State Killer: Did middle-class life provide suspect a perfect cover?," 26 Apr. 2018 Use insect repellents containing DEET (N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) or permethrin, but with caution. Andrea K. Mcdaniels, baltimoresun.com, "Ask the expert: With Lyme disease on the rise, here's how you can protect yourself," 3 July 2018 Trump is a repellent man—obviously so in his interactions with women. Jennifer Wright, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why Joe Biden Isn't the Best Alternative to Trump," 6 May 2019 And that could lead to better lures for mosquito traps, as well as better repellents. Malcolm Ritter, The Seattle Times, "Science Says: Why scientists prize plant, animal genomes," 3 Apr. 2019 Next to a pillow was a can of repellent with which his roommate sleeps. Sarah Maslin Nir, New York Times, "Rare Hantavirus May Have Caused Belmont Racetrack Worker’s Death," 22 June 2018 Store wool and silk items (which moths also like!) together in airtight plastic containers, with plenty of moth repellent—or, if you're concerned about chemicals, natural moth sachets. 8. Arianne Cohen, Woman's Day, "Time-Saving Household Cleaning Tricks," 21 Nov. 2011 Avoid them by wearing insect repellent and staying in the center of trails when walking in wooded or brushy areas. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "QUIZ: Can You Identify These Dangerous Summer Plants and Bugs?," 3 Aug. 2018

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

Adjective

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1583, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for repellent

Adjective

Latin repellent-, repellens, present participle of repellere

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Dictionary Entries near repellent

repel

repellence

repellency

repellent

repellingly

repent

repentance

Statistics for repellent

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for repellent

The first known use of repellent was in 1575

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More Definitions for repellent

repellent

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of repellent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: keeping something out or away
formal : causing someone to feel disgust

repellent

noun

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

: a substance that is used to keep something out or away

repellent

noun
re·​pel·​lent | \ ri-ˈpe-lənt How to pronounce repellent (audio) \

Kids Definition of repellent

: a substance used to keep off pests (as insects)

repellent

adjective
re·​pel·​lent
variants: also repellant \ ri-​ˈpel-​ənt How to pronounce repellant (audio) \

Medical Definition of repellent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: serving or tending to drive away or ward off often used in combination a mosquito-repellent spray

repellent

noun
variants: also repellant

Medical Definition of repellent (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that repels especially : a substance used to prevent insect attacks

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repellent

noun
re·​pel·​lent | \ ri-ˈpe-lənt\

Legal Definition of repellent

: a method used to avoid or discourage a hostile corporate takeover

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More from Merriam-Webster on repellent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with repellent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for repellent

Spanish Central: Translation of repellent

Nglish: Translation of repellent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about repellent

Comments on repellent

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