- To deter is defined as to keep someone from completing an action by giving them fear or doubt.
An example of to deter is for a policeman to stop you to ask questions.
deter definition by Webster's New World
Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- determent noun
deter definition by American Heritage Dictionary
verb de·terred, de·ter·ring, de·ters verb, transitive
To prevent or discourage from acting, as by means of fear or doubt: “Does negotiated disarmament deter war?” (Edward Teller). See Synonyms at dissuade.verb, intransitive
To prevent or discourage the occurrence of an action, as by means of fear or doubt: “It's this edge that gives nuclear weapons their power to deter” (Thomas Powers).
Origin: Latin dēterrēre : dē-, de- + terrēre, to frighten.
- de·terˈment noun
- de·terˈra·ble adjective
- de·terˈrer noun