Deter Definition

deterred, deterring, deters
deterred, deterring, deters
To keep or discourage (a person, group, or nation) from doing something by instilling fear, anxiety, doubt, etc.
Webster's New World
To prevent or discourage (an action or behavior).
Installed surveillance cameras to deter vandalism.
American Heritage
To make less likely or prevent from happening.
Protocols to deter infection.
American Heritage

To prevent something from happening.


To persuade someone not to do something; to discourage.


Origin of Deter

  • From Latin dēterreō (“deter, discourage”), from de (“from”) + terreō (“I frighten”).

    From Wiktionary

  • Latin dēterrēre dē- de- terrēre to frighten

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

Find Similar Words

Find similar words to deter using the buttons below.

Words Starting With

Words Ending With