V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: 1. to deny any knowledge of or responsibility for something; 2. to disclaim something or somebody

Synonyms: abjure, disown, renounce, repudiate, disclaim, deny

Antonyms: embrace, proclaim

Tips: Disavow comes from the Old French word avouer, "to avow." To avow is to state or affirm that something is true; the prefix "dis-" (Latin, "against") turns the word into its opposite. So, to disavow something is to state that it is not true, or to reject it. Disavow is synonymous with disclaim. Disavow is best used to deny knowledge of or a connection to something, while disclaim is best used to deny a connection or responsibility with/for something. To renounce something is to publicly disclaim or disavow it.

Usage Examples:

In hopes of a reduced sentence, the gangster disavowed his former associates and their illegal activities. (renounced, repudiated)

Janet knew that Anne had heard the gossip about her, but Anne disavowed it. (denied)

After the scandal surfaced, Michael tried to disavow his connection to it, but the truth was evident. (deny, disclaim)

In an effort to start fresh, Monica moved to a new city and disavowed her old friends. (disowned, repudiated)

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