- 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.
Origin of contempt
Examples from the Web for contempt
“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|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|DAILY BEAST
Fortunately, they are drawn from a pathetic preterite far beneath the contempt of our cultural elite.
Contempt for the middle class is often barely concealed among those most comfortably ensconced in the emerging class order.In the Future We'll All Be Renters: America's Disappearing Middle Class|Joel Kotkin|August 10, 2014|DAILY BEAST
All the ancient stories told of him by Whig enemies were revived, and believed by those who had long treated them with contempt.Martin Van Buren|Edward M. Shepard
Finally, we might seek for the characteristic anecdotes of Csar in his unexampled liberalities and contempt of money.The Caesars|Thomas de Quincey
On the model's face was her faint, impersonal professional smile that seemed to cover something like weariness or contempt.The Trimmed Lamp|O. Henry
Suddenly, Rodin burst into a loud laugh—a laugh of joy, contempt and triumph, impossible to describe.The Wandering Jew, Complete|Eugene Sue
They have become familiar with the English traveller only to regard him with contempt.
British Dictionary definitions for contempt
Word Origin for contempt
Word Origin and History for contempt
late 14c., from Latin contemptus "scorn," from past participle of contemnere "to scorn, despise," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + *temnere "to slight, scorn," of uncertain origin. Phrase contempt of court is attested from 19c., though the idea is several centuries older.
Idioms and Phrases with contempt
see familiarity breeds contempt.