[skawrn-fuh l]


full of scorn; derisive; contemptuous: He smiled in a scornful way.

Origin of scornful

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400; see origin at scorn, -ful
Related formsscorn·ful·ly, adverbscorn·ful·ness, nounun·scorn·ful, adjectiveun·scorn·ful·ly, adverbun·scorn·ful·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for scornfully

Historical Examples of scornfully

  • "I didn't care to have anything to do with it," returned Halbert, scornfully.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • It was in vain to try to do so scornfully, or with his usual insolence.

  • "That shows how much you know," said Pee-wee scornfully as he brushed off his clothing.

    Pee-wee Harris

    Percy Keese Fitzhugh

  • But this,” he added, scornfully, “is something you can not understand.

    The Strollers

    Frederic S. Isham

  • “They were all scared out of their senses,” Ruth said scornfully.

Word Origin and History for scornfully



mid-14c.; see scorn (n.) + -ful. Scorny was 19c. U.S. colloquial. Related: Scornfully; scornfulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper