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verb (used with object)
  1. to disclaim knowledge of, connection with, or responsibility for; disown; repudiate: He disavowed the remark that had been attributed to him.

Origin of disavow

1350–1400; Middle English disavouen, desavouen < Anglo-French, Old French desavouer. See dis-1, avow
Related formsdis·a·vow·ed·ly, adverbdis·a·vow·er, noun

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for disavow


  1. (tr) to deny knowledge of, connection with, or responsibility for
Derived Formsdisavowal, noundisavowedly, adverbdisavower, noun
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 disavow

late 14c., from Old French desavouer (13c.), from des- "opposite of" (see dis-) + avouer (see avow). Related: Disavowed; disavowing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper