- to put off (action, consideration, etc.) to a future time: The decision has been deferred by the board until next week.
- to exempt temporarily from induction into military service.
- to put off action; delay.
Origin of defer1
- to yield respectfully in judgment or opinion (usually followed by to): We all defer to him in these matters.
- to submit for decision; refer: We defer questions of this kind to the president.
Origin of defer2
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for deferring
Republicans, for the most part, treated Krass gently, deferring to their Democratic colleagues to ask the tough questions.Senate Democrats Accuse the CIA of Stonewalling on Torture Policies
December 18, 2013
But in reality, companies just leave their profits in overseas tax havens, deferring taxes indefinitely.8 Ridiculous Tax Loopholes: How Companies Are Avoiding the Tax Man
February 25, 2012
The Romney campaign wooed those voters by deferring to some of their emotions.Romney: A Skeptic, Not a Liar
January 26, 2012
After weeks of deferring to Vice President Joe Biden, President Barack Obama got involved in the negotiations in recent days.Farmer Payments Face Budget Diet
June 28, 2011
It makes a concise public argument for deferring deficit reduction until durable growth resumes.The GOP's Deficit Bluff
June 18, 2009
I admire him—you'd have to see him in the hospital, with every one deferring to him and all that, to understand.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
The reason of idleness and of crime is the deferring of our hopes.Essays, Second Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
By the twist of his mouth I saw that he was only deferring a smile.A Window in Thrums
J. M. Barrie
He put it in his pocket with the eagerness of one who sharpens a pleasure by deferring it.The Dead Command
Vicente Blasco Ibez
Doctor Bana had been only deferring the uncloaking of "Robert Shurtleff."The Romance of Old New England Rooftrees
Mary Caroline Crawford
- (tr) to delay or cause to be delayed until a future time; postpone
- (intr foll by to) to yield (to) or comply (with) the wishes or judgments of anotherI defer to your superior knowledge
Word Origin and History for deferring
"to delay," late 14c., differren, deferren, from Old French differer (14c.), from Latin differre "carry apart, scatter, disperse;" also "be different, differ;" also "defer, put off, postpone," (see differ). Etymologically identical with differ; the spelling and pronunciation differentiated from 15c., perhaps partly by association of this word with delay.