- to deny, dispute, or contradict.
- to speak or act against; oppose.
Origin of gainsay
Related Words for gainsayingcontravene, traverse, impugn, combat, disclaim, repudiate, refute, disagree, deny, fight, resist, controvert, oppose, negative, disprove, negate, cross, withstand, dispute, disaffirm
Examples from the Web for gainsaying
Historical Examples of gainsaying
But there was no gainsaying, even in his confused condition, Music Mountain.Nan of Music Mountain
Frank H. Spearman
Mrs. Middleton was sentimental—there was no gainsaying that; she was rather gushing.Elsie Marley, Honey
But if 'tis duty, my lad, England expec's and I'm not gainsaying.The Adventures of Harry Revel
Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch
I'm writing a good sound science book, which there's no gainsaying.Fantasia of the Unconscious
D. H. Lawrence
There's no gainsaying it, they'll all pass out of our hands.The Nabob, Volume 1 (of 2)
- (tr) archaic, or literary to deny (an allegation, a statement, etc); contradict
Word Origin for gainsay
"contradict," c.1300, literally "say against," from Old English gegn- "against" (see again) + say (v.). "Solitary survival of a once common prefix" [Weekley], which was used to form such now-obsolete compounds as gain-taking "taking back again," gainclap "a counterstroke," gainbuy "redeem," and gainstand "to oppose." Related: Gainsaid; gainsaying.