that disparages; tending to belittle or bring reproach upon: a disparaging remark.

Origin of disparaging

First recorded in 1635–45; disparage + -ing2
Related formsdis·par·ag·ing·ly, adverbnon·dis·par·ag·ing, adjectiveself-dis·par·ag·ing, adjective

Usage note

In this dictionary, the label Disparaging indicates that a term or definition is used with a deliberate intent to disparage, as to belittle a particular ethnic, religious, or social group. It is often paired with the label Offensive, which describes a term that gives offense whether or not any offense was intended.



verb (used with object), dis·par·aged, dis·par·ag·ing.

to speak of or treat slightingly; depreciate; belittle: Do not disparage good manners.
to bring reproach or discredit upon; lower the estimation of: Your behavior will disparage the whole family.

Origin of disparage

1250–1300; Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French desparag(i)er to match unequally, equivalent to des- dis-1 + -parag(i)er, derivative of parage equality, equivalent to par(er) to equalize (< Latin parāre; see peer1) + -age -age
Related formsdis·par·ag·er, nounun·dis·par·aged, adjective

Synonyms for disparage

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

Examples from the Web for disparaging

Contemporary Examples of disparaging

Historical Examples of disparaging

  • But these disparaging utterances were not without a secondary purpose.

  • Then it often has a diminutive or disparaging signification.

    The Verbalist

    Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)

  • Even to hear any one disparaging the appearance of Jess's son is to me a pain.

    A Window in Thrums

    J. M. Barrie

  • But the disparaging of those we love always alienates us from them to some extent.

    Madame Bovary

    Gustave Flaubert

  • Here there was neither; ugly stories, disparaging remarks, on every hand.

    Bob, Son of Battle

    Alfred Ollivant

British Dictionary definitions for disparaging


verb (tr)

to speak contemptuously of; belittle
to damage the reputation of
Derived Formsdisparagement, noundisparager, noundisparaging, adjectivedisparagingly, adverb

Word Origin for disparage

C14: from Old French desparagier, from des- dis- 1 + parage equality, from Latin par equal
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 disparaging



early 14c., "degrade socially," from Old French desparagier (Modern French déparager) "reduce in rank, degrade, devalue, depreciate," originally "to marry unequally," and thus by extension the disgrace or dishonor involved in this, from des- "away" (see dis-) + parage "rank, lineage" (see peer (n.)). Sense of "belittle" first recorded 1530s. Related: Disparaged; disparaging; disparagingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper