verb (used with object), de·nied, de·ny·ing.
- to state that (something declared or believed to be true) is not true: to deny an accusation.
- to refuse to agree or accede to: to deny a petition.
- to withhold the possession, use, or enjoyment of: to deny access to secret information.
- to withhold something from, or refuse to grant a request of: to deny a beggar.
- to refuse to recognize or acknowledge; disown; disavow; repudiate: to deny one’s gods.
- to withhold (someone) from accessibility to a visitor: The secretary denied his employer to all those without appointments.
- Obsolete. to refuse to take or accept.
- deny oneself, to refrain from satisfying one’s desires or needs; practice self-denial.
verb -nies, -nying or -nied (tr)
- to declare (an assertion, statement, etc) to be untruehe denied that he had killed her
- to reject as false; refuse to accept or believe
- to withhold; refuse to give
- to refuse to fulfil the requests or expectations ofit is hard to deny a child
- to refuse to acknowledge or recognize; disown; disavowthe baron denied his wicked son
- to refuse (oneself) things desired
early 14c., from Old French denoiir “deny, repudiate, withhold,” from Latin denegare “to deny, reject, refuse” (source of Italian dinegarre, Spanish denegar), from de- “away” (see de-) + negare “refuse, say ‘no,’ ” from Old Latin nec “not,” from Italic base *nek- “not,” from PIE root *ne- “no, not” (see un-). Related: Denied; denying.