English edit

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Etymology edit

From Middle English disdeynen, from Old French desdeignier (modern French dédaigner).

Pronunciation edit

  • enPR: dĭs-dān', IPA(key): /dɪsˈdeɪn/, /dɪˈsteɪn/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪn

Noun edit

disdain (uncountable)

  1. (uncountable) A feeling of contempt or scorn.
    The cat viewed the cheap supermarket catfood with disdain and stalked away.
    • c. 1587–1588, [Christopher Marlowe], Tamburlaine the Great. [] The First Part [], 2nd edition, part 1, London: [] [R. Robinson for] Richard Iones, [], published 1592, →OCLC; reprinted as Tamburlaine the Great (A Scolar Press Facsimile), Menston, Yorkshire, London: Scolar Press, 1973, →ISBN, Act II, scene i:
      He that with ſhepheards and a litle ſpoyle,
      Durſt in diſdaine of wrong and tyrannie,
      Defend his freedome gainſt a Monarchie:
      What will he doe ſupported by a king?
    • 1598–1599 (first performance), William Shakespeare, “Much Adoe about Nothing”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act III, scene i]:
      Disdain and scorn ride sparkling in her eyes.
    • 2018 June 24, Sam Wallace, “Harry Kane scores hat-trick as England hit Panama for six to secure World Cup knock-out qualification”, in Telegraph (UK), retrieved 24 June 2018:
      Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner.
  2. (obsolete) That which is worthy to be disdained or regarded with contempt and aversion.
  3. (obsolete) The state of being despised; shame.

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Verb edit

disdain (third-person singular simple present disdains, present participle disdaining, simple past and past participle disdained)

  1. (transitive) To regard (someone or something) with strong contempt.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, [] (King James Version), London: [] Robert Barker, [], →OCLC, 1 Samuel 17:42:
      When the Philistine [] saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth.
    • 1880, “Women”, in Edward Henry Palmer, transl., The Qur'an, verse 170:
      The Messiah, Jesus the son of Mary, is but the apostle of God and His Word, […] The Messiah doth surely not disdain to be a servant of God, nor do the angels who are nigh to Him; and whosoever disdains His service and is too proud, He will gather them altogether to Himself. But as for those who believe and do what is right, He will pay their hire and will give increase to them of His grace. But as for those who disdain and are too proud, He will punish them with a grievous woe, and they shall not find for them other than God a patron or a help.
    • 2012 November 7, Matt Bai, “Winning a Second Term, Obama Will Confront Familiar Headwinds”, in New York Times[1]:
      The country’s first black president, and its first president to reach adulthood after the Vietnam War and Watergate, Mr. Obama seemed like a digital-age leader who could at last dislodge the stalemate between those who clung to the government of the Great Society, on the one hand, and those who disdained the very idea of government, on the other.
  2. (intransitive, obsolete) To be indignant or offended.

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