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belittle

IPA

How to pronounce belittle (audio)

Dictionary Definition of 'belittle'

To speak or act in a way that diminishes the importance, value, or worth of someone or something.
"You shouldn't belittle someone's opinion just because it differs from yours."

Detailed Meaning of 'belittle'

It is to make someone or something seem unimportant, trivial, or insignificant. Belittling can take many forms, such as making fun of someone's abilities, interests, or appearance, or dismissing someone's feelings or opinions. It can be done through words, tone of voice, or body language. Belittling can be a form of verbal abuse, and can be hurtful and damaging to the person being belittled. It can also be used to undermine someone's confidence and self-esteem, making them feel small and insignificant. It can also be done in a subtle way, such as by making a sarcastic comment or by using a condescending tone of voice. In general, belittling is a way of speaking or acting that diminishes the importance, value, or worth of someone or something.

History and Etymology of 'belittle'

The verb 'belittle' is composed of two elements: 'be-' and 'little.' The prefix 'be-' in this context serves as an intensifier rather than a negation, and 'little' means 'small' or 'unimportant.' The etymology of 'belittle' suggests an act of making something seem even smaller or less significant than it originally is. When you 'belittle' someone or something, you are figuratively diminishing their stature or worth by speaking or acting in a way that reduces their importance. This term underscores the notion of minimizing or trivializing, often through disparaging comments or actions, with the intention of making someone or something appear less valuable or significant.

Examples of 'belittle' in a Sentence

1. We must not belittle the importance of regular exercise and a healthy diet.
2. She refused to belittle his musical talent, knowing it meant a lot to him.
3. In the review, critics didn't belittle the director's efforts to create an authentic historical drama.
4. Even in their disagreement, they made sure not to belittle each other's opinions.
5. The coach advised his team not to belittle the opposing team's skills.
6. It's not in her nature to belittle anyone; she treats everyone with kindness and respect.
7. The speaker didn't belittle the audience's questions, answering each one with patience.
8. When I told her about my plans, she didn't belittle them but encouraged me instead.
9. It is unkind to belittle someone's ambitions because they seem unattainable to you.
10. He wouldn't belittle her interest in painting, as he understood the importance of having a hobby.
11. In their argument, he chose not to belittle her concerns, validating her feelings instead.
12. She knew better than to belittle her own achievements.
13. The older kids didn't belittle the younger ones' efforts in the game.
14. Even in jest, it's not okay to belittle someone's insecurities.

Synonyms

synonym

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Quiz Categories Containing 'belittle'

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category

Multiple Choice Game

Multiple Choice

Opposite Words Game

Opposite Words

Same or Different Game

Same / different

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Spelling Bee

eb68db_354d245fb58b42ea93888ff127863df1.mp3

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