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despite

[dih-spahyt] /dɪˈspaɪt/
preposition
1.
in spite of; notwithstanding.
noun
2.
contemptuous treatment; insult.
3.
malice, hatred, or spite.
verb (used with object), despited, despiting.
4.
Obsolete. to anger or annoy (someone) out of spite.
Idioms
5.
in despite of, in spite of; notwithstanding:
He was tolerant in despite of his background and education.
Origin of despite
1250-1300
1250-1300; orig. in despite of; Middle English despit < Old French < Latin dēspectus view from a height, scorn, equivalent to dēspec-, variant stem of dēspicere (see despicable) + -tus suffix of v. action
Synonyms
1. See notwithstanding.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for despite
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • despite his self–supposed shortcomings, Fairholme was a gentleman.

    The Message Louis Tracy
  • despite the laughter there was a suspicious mist in Mr. Ried's eyes.

    Ester Ried Yet Speaking Isabella Alden
  • In this family council, despite the vivid interest Armstrong felt in the result, neither Amy Lawrence nor himself took any part.

  • Yet, despite her innocence, the world would not let her live according to her own conscience.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • But despite this and other things, the scenery on the river side will well repay inconvenience.

    The Sunny Side of Ireland John O'Mahony and R. Lloyd Praeger
British Dictionary definitions for despite

despite

/dɪˈspaɪt/
preposition
1.
in spite of; undeterred by
noun
2.
(archaic) contempt; insult
3.
(preposition) (rare) in despite of, in spite of
verb
4.
(transitive) an archaic word for spite
Word Origin
C13: from Old French despit, from Latin dēspectus contempt; see despise
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for despite

c.1300, originally a noun, from Old French despit (12c., Modern French dépit), from Latin despectus "a looking down on, scorn, contempt," from past participle of despicere (see despise).

The preposition (early 15c.) is short for in despite of (late 13c.), a loan-translation of Old French en despit de "in contempt of." Almost became despight during 16c. spelling reform.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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