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[dih-nouns] /dɪˈnaʊns/
verb (used with object), denounced, denouncing.
to condemn or censure openly or publicly:
to denounce a politician as morally corrupt.
to make a formal accusation against, as to the police or in a court.
to give formal notice of the termination or denial of (a treaty, pact, agreement, or the like).
Archaic. to announce or proclaim, especially as something evil or calamitous.
Obsolete. to portend.
Origin of denounce
1250-1300; Middle English denouncen < Old French denoncier to speak out < Latin dēnuntiāre to threaten (dē- de- + nuntiāre to announce, derivative of nuntius messenger)
Related forms
denouncement, noun
denouncer, noun
undenounced, adjective
Can be confused
denounce, renounce.
1. attack, stigmatize, blame, brand.
1. praise, commend. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for denounce
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Some day the past would confront and denounce her, perhaps; but for the moment she was enfranchised anew of human society.

    The Cup of Fury Rupert Hughes
  • To denounce this is dignified, but it is also easy and most often correspondingly useless.

    Laurus Nobilis Vernon Lee
  • She was tended by a traitor whom she hated, yet she was unable to denounce her, to rid herself of her daily, hourly presence.

    Notwithstanding Mary Cholmondeley
  • It would be impossible for me to denounce you for what I fear you are.

    The Devil's Paw E. Phillips Oppenheim
  • He did denounce the Pharisaic shams, the hollow hypocrisies, which had eaten away the nation's heart and strength.

British Dictionary definitions for denounce


verb (transitive)
to deplore or condemn openly or vehemently
to give information against; accuse
to announce formally the termination of (a treaty, etc)
  1. to announce (something evil)
  2. to portend
Derived Forms
denouncement, noun
denouncer, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French denoncier to proclaim, from Latin dēnuntiāre to make an official proclamation, threaten, from de- + nuntiāre to announce
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for denounce

early 14c., "announce," from Old French denoncier (12c., Modern French dénoncer), from Latin denuntiare "to announce, proclaim; denounce, menace; command, order," from de- "down" + nuntiare "proclaim, announce," from nuntius "messenger" (see nuncio). Negative sense in English via meaning "to declare or proclaim" something as cursed, excommunicated, forgiven, removed from office. Related: Denounced; denouncing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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