de·​spi·​ca·​ble | \ di-ˈspi-kə-bəl How to pronounce despicable (audio) , ˈde-(ˌ)spi- How to pronounce despicable (audio) \

Definition of despicable

: deserving to be despised : so worthless or obnoxious as to rouse moral indignation despicable behavior

Other Words from despicable

despicableness noun
despicably \ di-​ˈspi-​kə-​blē How to pronounce despicable (audio) , ˈde-​(ˌ)spi-​ \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for despicable

contemptible, despicable, pitiable, sorry, scurvy mean arousing or deserving scorn. contemptible may imply any quality provoking scorn or a low standing in any scale of values. a contemptible liar despicable may imply utter worthlessness and usually suggests arousing an attitude of moral indignation. a despicable crime pitiable applies to what inspires mixed contempt and pity. a pitiable attempt at tragedy sorry may stress pitiable inadequacy or may suggest wretchedness or sordidness. this rattletrap is a sorry excuse for a car scurvy adds to despicable an implication of arousing disgust. a scurvy crew of hangers-on

Examples of despicable in a Sentence

She is a despicable traitor. even within the prison population, pedophiles are regarded as particularly despicable
Recent Examples on the Web The presidential election came; Biden won it, and all of Trump’s despicable-but-hapless legal maneuvering failed. Michael Tomasky, The New Republic, 3 Jan. 2022 The cast -- including Sarah Snook as Shiv, Kieran Culkin as Roman, Alan Ruck as Connor, Matthew Macfadyen as Tom, and Nicholas Braun as Greg -- are a joy to watch, even when their characters do despicable things. oregonlive, 23 Dec. 2021 Worst of all, Fox has not yet publicly addressed the despicable on-air remarks by Lara Logan comparing Anthony S. Fauci to an infamous Nazi war criminal. Washington Post, 8 Dec. 2021 People are perfectly free to express their opinion on vaccines or any issue, but to openly display Nazi symbols outside the office of a Jewish legislator is despicable. NBC News, 17 Nov. 2021 What is condemnable, despicable & unpardonable is his being subjected to [two] complaints. NBC News, 18 Nov. 2021 In the latest episode, Strand hires an assassin to carry out a truly despicable act for almost no reason whatsoever. Erik Kain, Forbes, 14 Nov. 2021 Just to make people laugh, which sounds despicable. Vulture Editors, Vulture, 2 Nov. 2021 The same hallowed grounds where over 1 million people were murdered is still the site of despicable and contemptible crimes. Alan Goch,, 14 Oct. 2021

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

1553, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for despicable

Late Latin despicabilis, from Latin despicari to despise

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The first known use of despicable was in 1553

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Last Updated

16 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Despicable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for despicable



English Language Learners Definition of despicable

: very bad or unpleasant : deserving to be despised


de·​spi·​ca·​ble | \ di-ˈspi-kə-bəl How to pronounce despicable (audio) , ˈde-spik- \

Kids Definition of despicable

: very bad : deserving to be despised a despicable act of cowardice

More from Merriam-Webster on despicable

Nglish: Translation of despicable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of despicable for Arabic Speakers


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