spurn

1 of 2

verb

spurned; spurning; spurns

transitive verb

1
: to reject with disdain or contempt : scorn
2
: to tread sharply or heavily upon : trample

intransitive verb

1
archaic : to reject something disdainfully
2
obsolete
a
spurner noun

spurn

2 of 2

noun

1
a
: disdainful rejection
b
: contemptuous treatment
2
b
obsolete : stumble
Choose the Right Synonym for spurn

decline, refuse, reject, repudiate, spurn mean to turn away by not accepting, receiving, or considering.

decline often implies courteous refusal especially of offers or invitations.

declined his party's nomination

refuse suggests more positiveness or ungraciousness and often implies the denial of something asked for.

refused to lend them the money

reject implies a peremptory refusal by sending away or discarding.

rejected the manuscript as unpublishable

repudiate implies a casting off or disowning as untrue, unauthorized, or unworthy of acceptance.

teenagers who repudiate the values of their parents

spurn stresses contempt or disdain in rejection or repudiation.

spurned his overtures of friendship

Examples of spurn in a Sentence

Verb fiercely independent, the elderly couple spurned all offers of financial help
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Uncertainty over Nvidia’s ability to provide a steady supply of chips — no doubt exacerbated by Raimondo’s erratic messaging — also encourages Chinese firms to spurn Nvidia. Mary Hui, Quartz, 22 Feb. 2024 Considering Jenner appears to have spurned nipple-covers, the braless queen is putting a whole lot of faith in a strip of stretchy fabric (and perhaps a bit of fashion tape). Emily Tannenbaum, Glamour, 21 Jan. 2024 As Jim Harbaugh weighs his coaching future, the option of spurning the NFL and remaining with Michigan football lingers as a possibility. Craig Meyer, Detroit Free Press, 16 Jan. 2024 Florida State: No school will enter 2024 with more motivation than the Seminoles, who were spurned by the CFP selection committee and obliterated by Georgia in the Orange Bowl. Jon Wilner, The Mercury News, 9 Jan. 2024 Don Murray, the venturesome actor who earned an Oscar nomination for playing a rodeo cowboy smitten by Marilyn Monroe in Bus Stop, then spurned Hollywood’s attempts to mold him, has died. Mike Barnes, The Hollywood Reporter, 2 Feb. 2024 Even spurned lovers celebrate Valentine's Day too, in the most unorthodox ways. Louis Casiano, Fox News, 29 Jan. 2024 The priest offers to ransom her with a priceless treasure, which Agamemnon spurns rudely, and Apollo punishes this sacrilege with a plague. Judith Thurman, The New Yorker, 11 Sep. 2023 The American Artists Professional League and other conservative artists spurned modern art and attempted to keep it out of museums, while the modernists fought back with programs like the Gallery on Wheels, which brought modern art to military hospitals until government funding was canceled. Diane Scharper, Washington Examiner, 12 Jan. 2024
Noun
Lessons from watching JC Latham spurn Columbus in favor of Tuscaloosa seemed more appropriate as time went on. Stephen Means, cleveland, 17 Apr. 2021 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English, from Old English spurnan; akin to Old High German spurnan to kick, Latin spernere to spurn, Greek spairein to quiver

First Known Use

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 2a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

Time Traveler
The first known use of spurn was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near spurn

Cite this Entry

“Spurn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spurn. Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

spurn

verb
ˈspərn
: to reject or thrust aside with scorn
spurner noun

More from Merriam-Webster on spurn

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