There are 2 main definitions of defer in English:

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defer 1

Line breaks: defer
Pronunciation: /dɪˈfəː/

verb (defers, deferring, deferred)

[with object]
1Put off (an action or event) to a later time; postpone: they deferred the decision until February
More example sentences
  • The Government decision to defer the programme is to be hailed.
  • He said the national executive agreed to defer the election to October 2, two weeks later than the original date of September 18.
  • It was decided at that meeting to defer the Reunion until 2005.
Synonyms
shelve, suspend, stay, hold in abeyance, prorogue, pigeonhole, mothball;
North American put over, table, lay on the table, take a rain check on;
North American Law continue
informal put on ice, put on the back burner, put in cold storage
rare remit, respite
1.1 Law (Of a judge) postpone (a sentence) so that the circumstances or conduct of the defendant can be further assessed: the judge deferred sentence until 5 April for background reports
More example sentences
  • Sentence was deferred for reports until June 5 and they were remanded in custody.
  • Sentence was deferred for six months until February 11.
  • Sentence was deferred until January 14, 2004, to allow him to attend the care and respect programme.
1.2US historical Postpone the conscription of (someone): he was no longer deferred from the draft
More example sentences
  • Leslie started his National Service on November 17, 1960, after deferring his conscription in order to complete his apprenticeship as a printer.

Origin

Late Middle English (also in the sense 'put on one side'): from Old French differer 'defer or differ', from Latin differre, from dis- 'apart' + ferre 'bring, carry'. Compare with defer2 and differ.

More
  • refer from Late Middle English:

    Refer comes from Latin referre ‘carry back’, from re- ‘back’ and ferre ‘bring’. Referee dates from the early 17th century, but did not appear in sports contexts until the mid 19th century. Referre is also the source of mid 19th-century referendum from the Latin for ‘referring’. Ferre is the source of numerous words in English including confer ‘bring together’; defer ‘put to one side or away’, which shares an origin with differ; fertile ‘bearing’; and transfer ‘carry across’, all of which came into the language in the Late Middle English period.

Derivatives

deferrable

1
adjective
Example sentences
  • This might lead to categories such as ‘continuous’, ‘near-continuous’, ‘reliable’ and ‘deferrable’, with qualifications for each based on how long it would take to recover lost data.
  • The taxation service allows the proceeds of the sale of the lot to be considered part of the involuntary conversion and deferrable if they met certain conditions.
  • Reports of transactions and loans with an aggregate value less than $10,000 would be deferrable.

Words that rhyme with defer

à deux, agent provocateur, astir, auteur, aver, bestir, blur, bon viveur, burr, Chandigarh, coiffeur, concur, confer, connoisseur, cordon-bleu, cri de cœur, cur, danseur, Darfur, demur, de rigueur, deter, entrepreneur, er, err, farceur, faute de mieux, fir, flâneur, Fleur, force majeure, fur, hauteur, her, infer, inter, jongleur, Kerr, littérateur, longueur, masseur, Monseigneur, monsieur, Montesquieu, Montreux, murre, myrrh, occur, pas de deux, Pasteur, per, pisteur, poseur, pot-au-feu, prefer, prie-dieu, pudeur, purr, raconteur, rapporteur, refer, répétiteur, restaurateur, saboteur, sabreur, seigneur, Sher, shirr, sir, skirr, slur, souteneur, spur, stir, tant mieux, transfer, Ur, vieux jeu, voyageur, voyeur, were, whirr

Definition of defer in:

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There are 2 main definitions of defer in English:

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defer 2 Line breaks: defer
Pronunciation: /dɪˈfəː/

verb (defers, deferring, deferred)

[no object] (defer to)
Submit to or acknowledge the merit of: he deferred to Tim’s superior knowledge
More example sentences
  • But I'm sure there are many people like me who would defer to scientific facts that are duly recorded and widely acknowledged.
  • We don't defer to power structures and we don't acknowledge them.
  • I wouldn't agree, but actually I defer to Linda Erdreich on that one.
Synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: from Old French deferer, from Latin deferre 'carry away, refer (a matter)', from de- 'away from' + ferre 'bring, carry'. Compare with defer1.

More
  • refer from Late Middle English:

    Refer comes from Latin referre ‘carry back’, from re- ‘back’ and ferre ‘bring’. Referee dates from the early 17th century, but did not appear in sports contexts until the mid 19th century. Referre is also the source of mid 19th-century referendum from the Latin for ‘referring’. Ferre is the source of numerous words in English including confer ‘bring together’; defer ‘put to one side or away’, which shares an origin with differ; fertile ‘bearing’; and transfer ‘carry across’, all of which came into the language in the Late Middle English period.

Derivatives

deferrer

1
noun
Example sentences
  • The prosecutor's office is not allowed to force the deferrer into certain specified treatment methods, e.g. cognitive-behavioral models, programs, or institutions.
  • The third group are the deferrers who gained entry into university, but for a variety of reasons, did not avail themselves at the time.
  • If you're a self-described foot dragger, dawdler, delayer, postponer, deferrer, or are feeling overwhelmed and drained, this course is for you.

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