verb (used with object), belittled, belittling.
to regard or portray as less impressive or important than appearances indicate; depreciate; disparage.

1775–85, Americanism; be- + little

belittlement, noun
belittler, noun

minimize, decry, deprecate, deride, scorn, dismiss. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
belittle (bɪˈlɪtəl)
1.  to consider or speak of (something) as less valuable or important than it really is; disparage
2.  to cause to make small; dwarf

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1781, "to make small," from be- + little; first recorded in writings of Thomas Jefferson (and probably coined by him), who was roundly execrated for it in England:
"Belittle! What an expression! It may be an elegant one in Virginia, and even perfectly intelligible; but for our part, all we can do is to guess at its meaning. For shame, Mr. Jefferson!" ["European Magazine and London Review," 1787, reporting on "Notes on the State of Virginia"; to guess was considered another barbarous Yankeeism.]
The figurative sense of "depreciate, scorn as worthless" (as the reviewers did to this word) is from 1797.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
When you try to unravel something you've written, you belittle it in a way.
We must not belittle the new data received.
There is no need to belittle someone because you do not share the same views.
Don't belittle others when you're not so sharp yourself.
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