spurn
Pronunciation
  • (America) IPA: /spɚn/
  • (British) IPA: /spɜːn/
Verb

spurn (spurns, present participle spurning; past and past participle spurned)

  1. (ambitransitive) To reject disdainfully; contemn; scorn.
    • c. 1596–1599, William Shakespeare, “The Second Part of Henry the Fourth, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene ii]:
      to spurn at your most royal image
    • c. 1603–1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of King Lear”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene iii]:
      What safe and nicely I might well delay / By rule of knighthood, I disdain and spurn.
    • 1693, [John Locke], “§111”, in Some Thoughts Concerning Education, London: […] A[wnsham] and J[ohn] Churchill, […], OCLC 1161614482 ↗:
      Domestics will pay a more ready and cheerful service, when they find themselves not spurned, because fortune has laid them below the level of others, at their master's feet.
  2. (transitive) To reject something by pushing it away with the foot.
    • 1599, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Ivlivs Cæsar”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act III, scene i]:
      I spurn thee like a cur out of my way.
  3. (transitive) To waste; fail to make the most of (an opportunity)
  4. (intransitive, obsolete) To kick or toss up the heels.
    • The miller spurned at a stone.
    • 1716, John Gay, Trivia, Book 2
      The drunken chairman in the kennel spurns.
Translations Translations
  • German: treten, mit Füßen treten
  • Russian: пина́ть
Translations Noun

spurn (plural spurns)

  1. An act of spurning; a scornful rejection.
  2. A kick; a blow with the foot.
    • 1644, John Milton, The Doctrine or Discipline of Divorce:
      What defence can properly be used in such a despicable encounter as this but either the slap or the spurn?
  3. (obsolete) Disdainful rejection; contemptuous treatment.
    • c. 1599–1602, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Hamlet, Prince of Denmarke”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act III, scene ii]:
      The insolence of office and the spurns / That patient merit of the unworthy takes.
  4. (mining) A body of coal left to sustain an overhanging mass.
Translations Translations


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