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[dih-spahyz] /dɪˈspaɪz/
verb (used with object), despised, despising.
to regard with contempt, distaste, disgust, or disdain; scorn; loathe.
Origin of despise
1250-1300; Middle English despisen < Old French despis-, stem of despire < Latin dēspicere; see despicable
Related forms
despisable, adjective
despisableness, noun
despiser, noun
despisingly, adverb
undespised, adjective
undespising, adjective
contemn, detest.
admire. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for despiser
Historical Examples
  • This Ameres, whom the people regard as so holy, is at heart a despiser of the gods.

    The Cat of Bubastes G. A. Henty
  • Avoid affiance with a despiser of the Christian religion, whatever else he may have or may not have.

    The Wedding Ring T. De Witt Talmage
  • He is intensely proud of his caste, a despiser of his Christian fellow-townsmen.

    Albania E. F. Knight
  • For it is said that the despiser of ladies is never worthy in arms.

  • The man was a leveller, a chartist, a positivist—a despiser of dignities!

    Thomas Wingfold, Curate George MacDonald
  • Neither am I a despiser of woman, since I love, and am loved, of one who would bear the prize from all the ladies in the land.

  • To be exposed in the midst of his misery to the scorn of a despiser of his art was too much for his exhausted patience.

    Arachne, Complete Georg Ebers
  • He was arrested by the pope's order in 1497 and condemned as a heretic and despiser of the Holy See.

  • But he who is a despiser of glory, but is greedy of domination, exceeds the beasts in the vices of cruelty and luxuriousness.

    The City of God, Volume I Aurelius Augustine
  • He was puritanic in moral principle, loyal to his friends, and a despiser of cant and formalism.

British Dictionary definitions for despiser


(transitive) to look down on with contempt; scorn: he despises flattery
Derived Forms
despiser, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French despire, from Latin dēspicere to look down, from de- + specere to look
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 despiser



c.1300, from Old French despis-, present participle stem of despire "to despise," from Latin despicere "look down on, scorn," from de- "down" (see de-) + spicere/specere "look at" (see scope (n.1)). Related: Despised; despising.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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