8 Words That Are Older Than You Think


[dih-spel] /dɪˈspɛl/
verb (used with object), dispelled, dispelling.
to drive off in various directions; disperse; dissipate:
to dispel the dense fog.
to cause to vanish; alleviate:
to dispel her fears.
1625-35; < Latin dispellere to drive asunder, equivalent to dis- dis-1 + pellere to drive
Related forms
dispellable, adjective
dispeller, noun
undispellable, adjective
undispelled, adjective
1, 2. See scatter.
1. gather. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for dispelled
  • If the reflexive reaction to such a dish was a grimace, it was quickly dispelled.
  • But he has not dispelled all doubts about either the stability of his regime, or the consistency of its foreign policy.
  • Human overpopulation is a serious problem on this planet dispelled by many.
  • Initial impressions of the crater as a lifeless wasteland are quickly dispelled.
  • She dispelled them by winning the toss and electing to serve.
  • It also dispelled any notion that he might have harboured that justices should keep their personal political links under wraps.
  • It's time that this urban myth that everyone including many physicians believe is dispelled by the actual clinical evidence.
  • While she was here, she also dispelled a few notions about life as it is lived by the aristocracy.
  • But it has never dispelled suspicions that it has played a double game.
  • He dispelled all my doubts immediately, convincing me not to lose such an opportunity.
British Dictionary definitions for dispelled


verb -pels, -pelling, -pelled
(transitive) to disperse or drive away
Derived Forms
dispeller, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Latin dispellere, from dis-1 + pellere to drive
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for dispelled



c.1400, dispelen, from Latin dispellere "drive apart," from dis- "away" (see dis-) + pellere "to drive, push" (see pulse (n.1)). Since the meaning is "to drive away in different directions" it should not have as an object a single, indivisible thing (you can dispel suspicion, but not an accusation). Related: Dispelled; dispelling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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