- to prove to be false or erroneous, as an opinion or charge.
- to prove (a person) to be in error.
Origin of refute
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for refute
And no one is better equipped to refute this false equivalence than Mack herself.Stop Blaming Christy Mack: Porn Stars Don’t Deserve to Be Beaten
August 13, 2014
Szarkowski responded: “The claim is impossible to refute, and in fact not easy to understand.”New Getty Retrospective On Minor White’s Metamorphosing Camera
Sarah Bay Williams
July 10, 2014
This would seem to refute the new report that the captain alone would have been able to disable all the systems.Who Gagged the Search for MH370?
June 22, 2014
But this is all ‘a work in progress’… [that] we are trying to confirm or refute.Research Shows Link Between NSAID Use and Gut Disease
Valerie Vande Panne
April 21, 2014
Which is why we need the most up-to-date science—and for government entities to refute “abortion-inducing” misnomers.Why Can’t the FDA Fix Outdated Birth Control Labels?
March 22, 2014
Unconsciously his whole practice began to refute his theories.Alice, or The Mysteries, Complete
Traditions these which I mean not either to confirm with arguments of my own or to refute.Tacitus on Germany
And his sense of truth did not permit him to try to refute her accusation.A Spirit in Prison
I shall go back and refute that common scoffer, that caster of doubts.The Burning Spear
Neither did I tell you just now to refute me, said Dionysodorus; for how can I tell you to do that which is not?Euthydemus
- (tr) to prove (a statement, theory, charge, etc) of (a person) to be false or incorrect; disprove
- to deny (a claim, charge, allegation, etc)
Word Origin and History for refute
1510s, "refuse, reject," from Middle French réfuter (16c.) and directly from Latin refutare "drive back; rebut, disprove; repress, repel, resist, oppose," from re- "back" (see re-) + -futare "to beat," probably from PIE root *bhau- "to strike down" (see bat (n.1)).
Meaning "prove wrong" dates from 1540s. Since c.1964 linguists have frowned on the subtle shift in meaning towards "to deny," as it is used in connection with allegation. Related: Refuted; refuting.