Definitions

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

  • n. Words or actions intended to evoke contemptuous laughter at or feelings toward a person or thing: "I know that ridicule may be a shield, but it is not a weapon” ( Dorothy Parker).
  • transitive v. To expose to ridicule; make fun of.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. to criticize or disapprove of someone or something through scornful jocularity; to make fun of
  • n. derision; mocking or humiliating words or behaviour
  • adj. ridiculous

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Ridiculous.
  • n. An object of sport or laughter; a laughingstock; a laughing matter.
  • n. Remarks concerning a subject or a person designed to excite laughter with a degree of contempt; wit of that species which provokes contemptuous laughter; disparagement by making a person an object of laughter; banter; -- a term lighter than derision.
  • n. Quality of being ridiculous; ridiculousness.
  • transitive v. To laugh at mockingly or disparagingly; to awaken ridicule toward or respecting.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Ridiculous.
  • To treat with ridicule; treat with contemptuous merriment; represent as deserving of contemptuous mirth; mock; make sport or game of; deride.
  • Synonyms Deride, Mock, etc. (see taunt), jeer at, scoff at, scout; rally, make fun of, lampoon. See the noun.
  • To bring ridicule upon a person or thing; make some one or something ridiculous; cause contemptuous laughter.
  • n. Mocking or jesting words intended to excite laughter, with more or less contempt, at the expense of the person or thing of whom they are spoken or written; also, action or gesture designed to produce the same effect.
  • n. An object of mockery or contemptuous jesting.
  • n. Ridiculousness.
  • n. Synonyms Derision, mockery, gibe, jeer, sneer. See satire, ludicrous, and banter, verb
  • n. A corruption of reticule, formerly common.

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

  • n. language or behavior intended to mock or humiliate
  • n. the act of deriding or treating with contempt
  • v. subject to laughter or ridicule

Etymologies

French, from Latin rīdiculum, joke, from neuter of rīdiculus, laughable; see ridiculous.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin ridiculus ("laughable, comical, amusing, absurd, ridiculous"), from ridere ("to laugh"). (Wiktionary)

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