the feeling with which a person regards anything considered mean, vile, or worthless; disdain; scorn.
the state of being despised; dishonor; disgrace.
willful disobedience to or open disrespect for the rules or orders of a court (contempt of court ) or legislative body.
an act showing such disrespect.
- self-con·tempt, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use contempt in a sentence
They are the poster children for evil at its core and as such, need to be treated with contempt.
Adult curfews are imposed, colors of clothing are not allowed, littering or being too loud in public could result in contempt of court.While We’re Rethinking Policing, It’s Time to End Gang Injunctions | Jamie Wilson | September 15, 2020 | Voice of San Diego
In March, his attorney argued that MTS should be held in contempt for failing to comply with her subpoena and the city attorney’s office should be sanctioned for its failure to assist.
So let’s say you’re in a relationship with someone, and rather than being the contempt giver, you’re the contempt receiver.What Does Covid-19 Mean for Cities (and Marriages)? (Ep. 410) | Stephen J. Dubner | March 26, 2020 | Freakonomics
You’d think it’d be better to have contempt for people you, you didn’t know.What Does Covid-19 Mean for Cities (and Marriages)? (Ep. 410) | Stephen J. Dubner | March 26, 2020 | Freakonomics
“Internationally there has been a lot of horror and contempt for her actions, domestically very little,” he said.Sisi Is Persecuting, Prosecuting, and Publicly Shaming Egypt’s Gays | Bel Trew | December 30, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Alastair Sim had jowls like melting candle wax, a snarl like a cornered cat and eyes cold with contempt.
Their pronouncements suggest that they hold those commitments in contempt.Facebook Prince Purges The New Republic: Inside the Destruction of a 100-Year-Old Magazine | Lloyd Grove | December 5, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Trierweiler claims that Hollande, a socialist, showed contempt for the poor, supposedly calling them “the toothless.”Hell Hath No Fury Like Valerie Trierweiler, the French President’s Ex | Lizzie Crocker | November 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The President and his party are making their contempt all too clear to white working-class voters.With Immigration Move, Obama and the Welfare Party Strike Again | Lloyd Green | November 24, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
It is then we make him our friend, which sets us above the envy and contempt of wicked men.
Her eyes were blazing with triumph, yet her lips curved with contempt at the attitude of her trembling father.The Red Year | Louis Tracy
If he had cut her, he would have shown less contempt than in that stiff raising of the hat.Rosemary in Search of a Father | C. N. Williamson
He threw into the last two words an indescribable sound of half-laughing contempt.Bella Donna | Robert Hichens
Lifted to the skies for an hour by popular adulation, he has been sunk into obscurity ever since by historic contempt.
British Dictionary definitions for contempt
the attitude or feeling of a person towards a person or thing that he considers worthless or despicable; scorn
the state of being scorned; disgrace (esp in the phrase hold in contempt)
wilful disregard of or disrespect for the authority of a court of law or legislative body: contempt of court
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with contempt
see familiarity breeds contempt.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.