verb (used with object)

Law. to exclude from inheritance (an heir or a next of kin).
to deprive of a heritage, country, right, privilege, etc.: the disinherited peoples of the earth.

Origin of disinherit

First recorded in 1525–35; dis-1 + inherit
Related formsdis·in·her·i·tance, nounun·dis·in·her·it·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for disinheritance

Historical Examples of disinheritance

  • There was no threat of disinheritance, for there was nothing for him to inherit.

  • His uncle had threatened him, after making a will in his favour, with disinheritance.

  • He knew of her uncle's objection to their union, and his threat of disinheritance.

    The Gold Bag

    Carolyn Wells

  • From what quarter do you suppose these rumors of Floyd's disinheritance arose?

    The Incendiary

    W. A. (William Augustine) Leahy

  • No means by which his own daughter might be saved from disinheritance?

    The Maroon

    Mayne Reid

British Dictionary definitions for disinheritance


verb (tr)

law to deprive (an heir or next of kin) of inheritance or right to inherit
to deprive of a right or heritage
Derived Formsdisinheritance, 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 disinheritance



mid-15c., from dis- "not" + inherit. Related: Disinherited; disinheriting. Replaced earlier desherit (c.1300), from Old French desheriter.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper