verb (deters, deterring, deterred)[with object]
- 1Discourage (someone) from doing something, typically by instilling doubt or fear of the consequences: only a health problem would deter him from seeking re-electionMore example sentences
- All the academic evidence suggests fear of debt deters people from less prosperous backgrounds.
- Usually, the fear of victimisation deters people from making complaints against corrupt officials.
- It is the lack of awareness and fear that deters people from getting themselves examined.
- 1.1Prevent the occurrence of: strategists think not only about how to deter war, but about how war might occurMore example sentences
- Informing on dealers can deter crime and prevent untold human misery, according to the campaign.
- The order is aimed at deterring anti-social behaviour and preventing escalation of the behaviour, without recourse to criminal sanctions.
- It clearly makes nuclear weapons a tool for fighting a war, rather than deterring them.
mid 16th century: from Latin deterrere, from de- 'away from' + terrere 'frighten'.