- to decline to accept (something offered): to refuse an award.
- to decline to give; deny (a request, demand, etc.): to refuse permission.
- to express a determination not to (do something): to refuse to discuss the question.
- to decline to submit to.
- (of a horse) to decline to leap over (a barrier).
- to decline to accept (a suitor) in marriage.
- Military. to bend or curve back (the flank units of a military force) so that they face generally to the flank rather than the front.
- Obsolete. to renounce.
- to decline acceptance, consent, or compliance.
Origin of refuse1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for refusing
And now Portland, Los Angeles, and San Francisco are all suing Uber for refusing to play by their old regulatory playbooks.Why Do ‘Progressives’ Want to Ban Uber and AirBnB?
Adam Thierer, Christopher Koopman
December 30, 2014
The video showing cops piling on Eric Garner in Staten Island for refusing arrest elicited outrage across ideological lines.The GOP and Police Unions: A Love Story
December 12, 2014
Leto immersed himself in the role completely, slimming down to 116 pounds and refusing to break character on set.Renaissance Man Jared Leto Defies Categorization
The Daily Beast
December 8, 2014
Refusing to say who she voted for in 2008 and 2012 has hurt Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes.And Now Mitch McConnell Is the ‘Pro-Woman’ Candidate!
October 20, 2014
As you should know by now, Grimes has been refusing to say whether she voted for President Obama.How Red-State Democrats Can Throw Obama Under the Bus
October 13, 2014
At once, Smithson became apologetic, while refusing to retreat.Within the Law
I like to have a chance of refusing an invitation I yearn for, and then be forced to accept.In the Midst of Alarms
You mean that you are refusing to pay me my deposits on my private account?Her Father's Daughter
There will be no passing' by on the other side, no refusing to go into his company.Female Scripture Biographies, Vol. II
Francis Augustus Cox
"'Tis nothing," she answered, refusing his support with feminine reserve.The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper
- (tr) to decline to accept (something offered)to refuse a present; to refuse promotion
- to decline to give or grant (something) to (a person, organization, etc)
- (when tr, takes an infinitive) to express determination not (to do something); declinehe refuses to talk about it
- (of a horse) to be unwilling to take (a jump), as by swerving or stopping
- (tr) (of a woman) to declare one's unwillingness to accept (a suitor) as a husband
- anything thrown away; waste; rubbish
- (as modifier)a refuse collection
Word Origin and History for refusing
c.1300, from Old French refuser "reject, disregard, avoid" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *refusare, frequentative form from past participle stem of Latin refundere "pour back, give back" (see refund (v.)). Related: Refused; refusing.
mid-14c., "an outcast;" mid-14c., "a rejected thing, waste material, trash," from Old French refus "waste product, rubbish; refusal, denial, rejection," a back-formation from the past participle of refuser (see refuse (v.)). As an adjective from late 14c., "despised, rejected;" early 15c., "of low quality."