Definition of disdain in English:


Line breaks: dis|dain
Pronunciation: /dɪsˈdeɪn


[mass noun]


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  • 1Consider to be unworthy of one’s consideration: he disdained his patients as an inferior rabble
    More example sentences
    • Dismissed by the press, disdained by opponents, Cassius Clay kept on winning.
    • Aside from mushrooms, fungi are widely disdained by the agriculture industry.
    • Although accustomed to supporting others through their physical pain, Sam disdains emotional intimacy ‘because it hurts.’
    scorn, deride, pour scorn on, regard with contempt, show contempt for, be contemptuous about, sneer at, sniff at, curl one's lip at, pooh-pooh, look down on, belittle, undervalue, slight; despise
    informal look down one's nose at, turn up one's nose at, thumb one's nose at
    archaic contemn
    rare misprize
  • 1.1Refuse to do (something) from feelings of pride or superiority: she remained standing, pointedly disdaining his invitation to sit down [with infinitive]: he disdained to discuss the matter further
    More example sentences
    • Snape was sitting at the desk, but he disdained to even so much as lay a finger on the keypad.
    • He ‘distained to mingle in the intrigues of court life’ and found his chief occupation in the formation of his collection.
    • Perigryne felt his gaze upon her once again, but she disdained to move from her position.


Middle English: from Old French desdeign (noun), desdeignier (verb), based on Latin dedignari, from de- (expressing reversal) + dignari 'consider worthy' (from dignus 'worthy').

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