- to interrupt the quiet, rest, peace, or order of; unsettle.
- to interfere with; interrupt; hinder: Please do not disturb me when I'm working.
- to interfere with the arrangement, order, or harmony of; disarrange: to disturb the papers on her desk.
- to perplex; trouble: to be disturbed by strange behavior.
- to cause disturbance to someone's sleep, rest, etc.: Do not disturb.
Origin of disturb
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for disturb
They knew they might see things that will disturb them, but could not deter them from their duty.Any Outrage Out There for Ramos and Liu, Protesters?
December 22, 2014
I disturb their efforts to get their children and the few clothes they have with them clean using hoses and battered buckets.Turkish President Kisses Off Kurds Under Siege By ISIS
October 7, 2014
He is carrying the briefcase as he enters the room, so still even in walking that he does not disturb the air around him.The Stacks: The True Greatness of Muhammad Ali
February 23, 2014
The house is eerily pristine and immaculately preserved; your visit is the only thing threatening to disturb it.Seduced by Art & Beauty ‘At the House of Mr X’
January 17, 2014
The scenarios described above are enough to disturb even the most jaded.More Shocking Than Online Suicides Are the Crowds Who Clamor to Watch
December 10, 2013
When they do not disturb him with earthly medicines, he is quiet and happy.Philothea
Lydia Maria Child
If, however great the cause, I fret myself I disturb the right conditions.The Conquest of Fear
It could disturb no one if Mrs. Roberts tried her little experiment.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
No other noise could disturb us but the cackling of hens and the quacking of ducks.The Roof of France
Perhaps superior; for, above the sky, there would be angels to disturb him.The Man of Adamant
- to intrude on; interrupt
- to destroy or interrupt the quietness or peace of
- to disarrange; muddle
- (often passive) to upset or agitate; troubleI am disturbed at your bad news
- to inconvenience; put outdon't disturb yourself on my account
Word Origin and History for disturb
c.1300, "to stop or hinder," from Old French destorber (Old North French distourber) and directly from Latin disturbare "throw into disorder," from dis- "completely" (see dis-) + turbare "to disorder, disturb," from turba "turmoil" (see turbid).
Meaning "to frighten" is late 13c.; that of "to stir up, agitate" is c.1300. Related: Disturbed; disturbing; disturbingly. Middle English also had distourbler (n.) "one who disturbs or incites" (late 14c.).