verb (used with object)

to fail to fulfill the expectations or wishes of: His gross ingratitude disappointed us.
to defeat the fulfillment of (hopes, plans, etc.); thwart; frustrate: to be disappointed in love.

verb (used without object)

to bring or cause disappointment.

Origin of disappoint

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English word from Middle French word desappointer. See dis-1, appoint
Related formsdis·ap·point·er, noun

Synonyms for disappoint

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for disappoint

Contemporary Examples of disappoint

Historical Examples of disappoint

  • He did not disappoint the hopes of his friends in regard to his fiscal abilities.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • But he had asked her to go to the theatre, and he did not wish to disappoint her.

    The Foolish Lovers

    St. John G. Ervine

  • Of course, Martin had not meant to disappoint her, nor deliberately hurt her.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • They've always wanted a sister to pet; and Aunt Phoebe is hoping you'll not disappoint her.

    Good Indian

    B. M. Bower

  • I dared not disappoint him by telling him that I loved Charley Osborne.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede

    George MacDonald

British Dictionary definitions for disappoint


verb (tr)

to fail to meet the expectations, hopes, desires, or standards of; let down
to prevent the fulfilment of (a plan, intention, etc); frustrate; thwart

Word Origin for disappoint

C15 (originally meaning: to remove from office): from Old French desapointier; see dis- 1, appoint
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 disappoint

early 15c., "dispossess of appointed office," from Middle French desappointer (14c.) "undo the appointment, remove from office," from des- (see dis-) + appointer "appoint" (see appoint).

Modern sense of "to frustrate expectations" (late 15c.) is from secondary meaning of "fail to keep an appointment." Related: Disappointed; disappointing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper