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verb (used without object), de·murred, de·mur·ring.
  1. to make objection, especially on the grounds of scruples; take exception; object: They wanted to make him the treasurer, but he demurred.
  2. Law. to interpose a demurrer.
  3. Archaic. to linger; hesitate.
  1. the act of making objection.
  2. an objection raised.
  3. hesitation.
  4. Law. Obsolete. a demurrer.

Origin of demur

1175–1225; Middle English demuren < Anglo-French demurer, Old French demorer < Latin dēmorārī to linger, equivalent to dē- de- + morārī to delay, derivative of mora delay
Related formsde·mur·ra·ble, adjectiveun·de·mur·ring, adjective
Can be confuseddemur demure

Synonyms for demur

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Antonyms for demur Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for demurred

Contemporary Examples of demurred

Historical Examples of demurred

  • While Demosthenes argued, and Nicias demurred, Gylippus had not been idle.

  • I demurred—I had got the paternal injunction to remain with the horse and cart.

  • As she demurred, he ended her life with a bullet from a pistol.

  • She had demurred, of course, when he himself had suggested this.

    The Snare

    Rafael Sabatini

  • Jerry had demurred, but she recognized, behind all the fun, a real firmness.


    Jane Abbott

British Dictionary definitions for demurred


verb -murs, -murring or -murred (intr)
  1. to raise objections or show reluctance; object
  2. law to raise an objection by entering a demurrer
  3. archaic to hesitate; delay
noun also: demurral (dɪˈmʌrəl)
  1. the act of demurring
  2. an objection raised
  3. archaic hesitation
Derived Formsdemurrable, adjective

Word Origin for demur

C13: from Old French demorer, from Latin dēmorārī to loiter, linger, from morārī to delay, from mora a delay
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

Word Origin and History for demurred



c.1200, "to linger, tarry, delay," from Old French demorer "delay, retard," from Latin demorari "to linger, loiter, tarry," from de- (see de-) + morari "to delay," from mora "a pause, delay" (see moratorium). Main modern sense of "raise objections" is first attested 1630s. Related: Demurred; demurring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper