• WordNet 3.6
    • v refute prove to be false or incorrect
    • v refute overthrow by argument, evidence, or proof "The speaker refuted his opponent's arguments"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • v. t Refute To disprove and overthrow by argument, evidence, or countervailing proof; to prove to be false or erroneous; to confute; as, to refute arguments; to refute testimony; to refute opinions or theories; to refute a disputant. "There were so many witnesses in these two miracles that it is impossible to refute such multitudes."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • refute To disprove and overthrow by argument or countervailing proof; prove to be false or erroneous: as, to refute a doctrine or an accusation.
    • refute To overcome in argument; prove to be in error: as, to refute a disputant.
    • refute Synonyms Confute and Refute agree in representing a quick and thorough answer to assertions made by another. Confute applies to arguments, refute to both arguments and charges.
    • n refute See refuit.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Refute rē-fūt′ to repel: to oppose: to disprove
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  • Benjamin Disraeli
    “Nine-tenths of the existing books are nonsense and the clever books are the refutation of that nonsense.”
  • Sharon Anthony Bower
    Sharon Anthony Bower
    “People can refute your facts, but never your feelings.”
  • Josh Billings
    “Silence is one of the hardest arguments to refute.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. réfuter, L. refuteare, to repel, refute. Cf. Confute Refuse to deny
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. réfuter—L. refutārere-, back, root of fundĕre, futilis.


In literature:

But history refutes this.
"Physics and Politics, or, Thoughts on the application of the principles of "natural selection" and "inheritance" to political society" by Walter Bagehot
He will not refute the bad arguments of the king as he will refute another man's bad arguments.
"The English Constitution" by Walter Bagehot
Your presence refutes the worst accusation, and removes a heavy weight from my mind.
"The Lances of Lynwood" by Charlotte M. Yonge
He smiled, and was never weary of pointing out practical refutations.
"Sandra Belloni, Complete" by George Meredith
If it were false, it could be refuted; we could despise it as a trick of journalism.
"Diana of the Crossways, Complete" by George Meredith
Even thus, and not otherwise, would she have desired him to refute the slander.
"The Crown of Life" by George Gissing
We only hear of a "Refutation of Deism", a dialogue between Eusebes and Theosophus, which attacked all forms of Theistic belief.
"Percy Bysshe Shelley" by John Addington Symonds
All these horrible charges refute themselves.
"Unknown to History" by Charlotte M. Yonge
The system of physical points, which is another medium, is too absurd to need a refutation.
"A Treatise of Human Nature" by David Hume
She was ready to own that she loved that tall young man of mystery whose face had refuted the suspicion that he was a mere vagrant.
"The Landloper" by Holman Day

In poetry:

Perhaps you think, to serve my ends,
These statements I refute,
When I admit that these dear friends
Were parties to a suit?
"Damon vs. Pythias" by William Schwenck Gilbert
I am, like one that cannot hear,
Or like an idiot I appear,
And leave them, as they please, dispute,
Nor strive their scandals to refute.
"Psalm XXXVIII." by Rees Prichard
Till we with inner word our care refute
Laughing that this our bosoms yet assails,
While there are maidens dancing to a flute
In Andalusian vales.
"To One Who Comes Now And Then" by Francis Ledwidge
I can simply wish I might refute you,
Wish my friend would,--by a word, a wink,--
Bid me stop that foolish mouth,--you brute you!
He keeps absent,--why, I cannot think.
"Fears And Scruples" by Robert Browning
The rose thought, touched by words, doth turn
Wan ashes. Still, from memory's urn,
The lingering blossoms tenderly
Refute our wilding minstrelsy.
Alas! we work but beauty's wrong!
The dream is lovelier than the song.
"Dream And The Song" by James David Corrothers

In news:

DEP study refutes Crystal Stroud 's claim of gas well poisoning.
Granville Summit resident Crystal Stroud 's claim that she suffered barium poisoning by drinking well water contaminated by natural gas drilling has been refuted by a DEP investigation, DEP officials said on Thursday.
V8 Supercars chairman Tony Cochrane refutes claims about a ban on his series' drivers racing in the V8 Super Tourers in New Zealand.
UPDATED Supporters refute district reports on Trafton, plead with Board to keep school open.
Cal Thomas refutes his own truism .
Cincinnati issued a statement Wednesday afternoon refuting the report.
Research in Motion refuted on Wednesday a new round of Indian media reports, which claim that the BlackBerry maker has granted the Indian government the encryption keys to its secure corporate email and messaging services.
JBL refutes NYU professor's Mamajuana claim.
It also spends a lot of time refuting a throwaway line of Nye's, about whether America is the leader in supporting creationist education.
The museum contains exhibits that depict the story of creationism and refute the scientific theory of evolution.
Def Leppard's Vivian Campbell Refutes 'Garbage' Report About Denying Wife Spousal Support.
Cincinnati issued a statement Wednesday afternoon refuting the report.
State expert refutes claims STAAR test is too hard.
Dave Grohl has emphatically refuted speculation that the Foo Fighters are splitting up, saying instead the band is merely taking a break.
This is anti-Tom Friedmanism— a refutation of free-trade fundamentalism.

In science:

New and varied experimental techniques were needed, both to accumulate the basic data, and to crucially check or refute intermediate hypotheses.
Linear Collider Physics Resource Book for Snowmass 2001 - Part 1: Introduction
We gather observations to test the hypotheses and help to either confirm or refute the theory.
Computational Asteroseismology
Taking advantage of the above model, we can refute the argument that the uncertainty principle generally leads to a general sensitivity limit, called the standard quantum limit, for monitoring free-mass position [12,9].
Position measuring interactions and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle
It is however crucial for our full understanding of the proton spin that the prediction of a large polarized gluon is confirmed or refuted by direct measurements of ∆g .
The Spin Structure of the Proton and Polarized Collider Physics
This is especially true if the solar neutrino problem is solved by the large-mixing angle (LMA) case, which is presently favored, and which can be confirmed or refuted by the KamLAND experiment in the immediate future .
Physics with Supernovae