[dis-koun-tn-uh ns]

verb (used with object), dis·coun·te·nanced, dis·coun·te·nanc·ing.

to disconcert, embarrass, or abash: With his composure, he survived every attempt to discountenance him.
to show disapproval of: The teachers discountenanced smoking by the students.


disapproval; disapprobation.

Nearby words

  1. discount house,
  2. discount market,
  3. discount rate,
  4. discount store,
  5. discounted cash flow,
  6. discounter,
  7. discourage,
  8. discouragement,
  9. discourse,
  10. discourse analysis

Origin of discountenance

First recorded in 1570–80; dis-1 + countenance

Related formsdis·coun·te·nanc·er, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for discountenance

British Dictionary definitions for discountenance


verb (tr)

to make ashamed or confused
to disapprove of


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 discountenance



"put to shame," 1570s, from Middle French descontenancer (16c.) "to abash," from des- (see dis-) + contenancer (see countenance).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper