Word of the Day

Monday, November 12, 2001

demur

\dih-MUR\ , intransitive verb;
1.
To object; to take exception.
2.
To delay.
noun:
1.
The act of demurring.
2.
Objection.
3.
Delay.
Quotes:
It had been Letitia's wish, not Thaddeus's, that there should be a child but, while wondering at the time what it was going to be like to have a baby about the place, he did not demur, and soon after Georgina's birth was surprised to find his feelings quite startlingly transformed.
-- William Trevor, Death in Summer
She would ask to see something I had written, and I would demur, saying that anything I had written was terrible, and she would persist until I gave in and said, "If you insist," and later she would proclaim that my work was not terrible, my work was terrific.
-- Rosemary Mahoney, A Likely Story
All the same, she succeeded in exacting from him the promise that . . . he would depart Milan forthwith. Beyle accepted this condition without demur and left Milan.
-- W.G. Sebald, Vertigo (translated by Michael Hulse)
One member of the staff who left his pass at home wrote on the temporary pass he was given the name 'Heinrich Himmler' and was admitted without demur.
-- Noel Annan, Changing Enemies
Origin:
Demur comes from Old French demorer, "to linger, to stay," from Latin demorari, from de- + morari, "to delay, to loiter," from mora, "a delay."
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