Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To indicate unwillingness to do, accept, give, or allow: She was refused admittance. He refused treatment.
  • transitive v. To indicate unwillingness (to do something): refused to leave.
  • transitive v. To decline to jump (an obstacle). Used of a horse.
  • intransitive v. To decline to do, accept, give, or allow something.
  • n. Items or material discarded or rejected as useless or worthless; trash or rubbish.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Discarded, rejected.
  • n. Collectively, items or material that have been discarded; rubbish, garbage.
  • v. To decline (a request or demand).
  • v. To decline a request or demand, forbear; to withhold permission.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Refused; rejected; hence; left as unworthy of acceptance; of no value; worthless.
  • n. Refusal.
  • n. That which is refused or rejected as useless; waste or worthless matter.
  • intransitive v. To deny compliance; not to comply.
  • transitive v. To deny, as a request, demand, invitation, or command; to decline to do or grant.
  • transitive v. To throw back, or cause to keep back (as the center, a wing, or a flank), out of the regular aligment when troops ar� about to engage the enemy.
  • transitive v. To decline to accept; to reject; to deny the request or petition of.
  • transitive v. To disown.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To deny, as a request, demand, or invitation; decline to do or grant: as, to refuse admittance; she refused herself to callers.
  • To decline to accept; reject: as, to refuse an office; to refuse an offer.
  • To disown; disavow; forsake.
  • Milit., to hold (troops) back, or move (them) back from the regular alinement, when about to engage the enemy in battle. In the oblique order of battle, if either flank attack, the other flank is refused.
  • Fail to receive; resist; repel.
  • Synonyms and Decline, Refuse, Reject, Repel, and Rebuff are in the order of strength.
  • To decline to accept or consent; fail to comply.
  • n. That which is refused or rejected; waste or useless matter; the worst or meanest part; rubbish.
  • n. Synonyms Dregs, scum, dross, trash, rubbish.
  • Refused; rejected; hence, worthless; of no value: as, the refuse parts of stone or timber.
  • To fuse or melt again.
  • In chess, same as decline, 10.
  • n. A refusal.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. resist immunologically the introduction of some foreign tissue or organ
  • v. refuse to accept
  • v. refuse entrance or membership
  • v. refuse to let have
  • v. elude, especially in a baffling way
  • v. show unwillingness towards
  • n. food that is discarded (as from a kitchen)

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English refusen, from Old French refuser, from Vulgar Latin *refūsāre, probably blend of Latin recūsāre, to refuse; see recuse and Latin refūtāre, refute; see refute.
Middle English, from Old French refus, rejection, refuse, from refuser, to refuse; see refuse1.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Apparently from Old French refuse (French refusé), past participle of refuser ("to refuse"), as Etymology 2, below.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French refuser, from Vulgar Latin *refusare, a blend of Classical Latin refutō and recusō.

Examples

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    November 24, 2007