discountenance
Pronunciation
  • (British) IPA: /dɪsˈkaʊntənəns/
Verb

discountenance (discountenances, present participle discountenancing; past and past participle discountenanced)

  1. (transitive) To have an unfavorable opinion of; to deprecate or disapprove of.
    • 1855, George Bancroft, History of the United States, from the Discovery of the American Continent, London: Routledge, Volume V, Chapter XXX, p. 74,
      A town meeting was convened to discountenance riot.
    • 1908, Edward Carpenter, The Intermediate Sex, London: George Allen & Unwin, 1921, Chapter 4, p. 90,
      So far from friendship being an institution whose value is recognised and understood, it is at best scantily acknowledged, and is often actually discountenanced and misunderstood.
    • 1949, George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four, Part One, Chapter 2,
      'Mrs' was a word somewhat discountenanced by the Party—you were supposed to call everyone 'comrade'—but with some women one used it instinctively.
  2. (transitive) To abash, embarrass or disconcert.
    • 1671, John Milton, “Book the Second”, in Paradise Regain’d. A Poem. In IV Books. To which is Added, Samson Agonistes, London: Printed by J. M[acock] for John Starkey […], OCLC 228732398 ↗, lines 216–220, page 39 ↗:
      How would one look from his Majeſtick brow, / Seated as on the top of Vertues hill, / Diſcount'nance her deſpiſ'd, and put to rout / All her array, her female pride deject, / Or turn to reverent awe? {{...}
  3. (transitive) To refuse countenance or support to; to discourage.
Noun

discountenance (uncountable)

  1. Cold treatment; disapprobation.



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