de·​ride di-ˈrīd How to pronounce deride (audio)
derided; deriding

transitive verb

: to laugh at or insult contemptuously
got derided by a carnival clown
: to subject to usually bitter or contemptuous ridicule or criticism
politicians deriding their opponents
: to express a lack of respect or approval of
were derided as the weaker sex
derider noun
deridingly adverb

Did you know?

Deride is a combination of the prefix de- ("make lower") and ridēre, a Latin verb meaning "to laugh." Ridēre echoes in other English words as well, some common and some obscure. In the former category we have ridicule and ridiculous. Ridicule functions as both verb ("to make fun of") and noun ("the act of making fun of"), while ridiculous describes what arouses or deserves ridicule or mockery. Obscure ridēre words include arride (it has an obsolete meaning of "to smile or laugh at," and also means "to please, gratify, or delight") and irrision, a synonym of derision, the close noun relation of deride. Also in the category of obscure ridēre words is risorius; this medical term refers to a narrow band of facial muscle fibers that reach to the corners of the mouth to make smiling possible.

Choose the Right Synonym for deride

ridicule, deride, mock, taunt mean to make an object of laughter of.

ridicule implies a deliberate often malicious belittling.

consistently ridiculed everything she said

deride suggests contemptuous and often bitter ridicule.

derided their efforts to start their own business

mock implies scorn often ironically expressed as by mimicry or sham deference.

youngsters began to mock the helpless wino

taunt suggests jeeringly provoking insult or challenge.

hometown fans taunted the visiting team

Examples of deride in a Sentence

my brothers derided our efforts, but were forced to eat their words when we won first place
Recent Examples on the Web It was at once vociferously praised and bashed — and became a best seller, to boot — and Mr. Carr derided his critics on Amazon. Penelope Green, New York Times, 24 May 2024 At nearly three hours, the anthology film was divisive: Some hailed its scabrous take on human nature as brilliant, and others derided it as bloated. Matt Donnelly, Variety, 21 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for deride 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'deride.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin deridēre, from de- + ridēre to laugh

First Known Use

circa 1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of deride was circa 1526


Dictionary Entries Near deride

Cite this Entry

“Deride.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


de·​ride di-ˈrīd How to pronounce deride (audio)
derided; deriding
: to laugh at scornfully : make fun of
derider noun
deridingly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on deride

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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