follow's Word of the Year is...


[ri-fyoo-zuh l] /rɪˈfyu zəl/
an act or instance of refusing.
priority in refusing or taking something; option.
complete resistance of a driven pile to further driving.
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English refusell. See refuse1, -al2
Related forms
prerefusal, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for refusal
  • It's a refusal to accept new ideas in science as well.
  • Witness their refusal to discuss the scientific arguments of global warming skeptics.
  • It also explains red and blue shifts, as the continuing refusal of light to align with anything other than its own reality.
  • Her refusal to cave to the dictators has translated her life into a banner for human rights everywhere.
  • His refusal to show us how events play out comes across as sheer negligence, or indifference.
  • There is a difference between scepticism and the refusal to accept any conclusion.
  • And, in the end, it's a refusal to be governed by fear:.
  • What does matter is that popular refusal to tolerate the current state of affairs appears to be reaching a tipping point.
  • In this context, the film's surprising refusal to follow through rigorously on its own genre conventions has an odd resonance.
  • He feels only the postponement or refusal, which he considers harsh.
British Dictionary definitions for refusal


the act or an instance of refusing
the opportunity to reject or accept; option
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for refusal

late 15c., from refuse + -al (2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Nearby words for refusal