a facial expression of contempt or scorn; the upper lip curls
a contemptuous or scornful remark
express through a scornful smile
"she sneered her contempt"
"she sneered at her little sister's efforts to play the song on the piano"
English Synonyms and Antonyms
A sneer may be simply a contemptuous facial contortion, or it may be some brief satirical utterance that throws a contemptuous side-light on what it attacks without attempting to prove or disprove; a depreciatory implication may be given in a sneer such as could only be answered by elaborate argument or proof, which would seem to give the attack undue importance:
Who can refute a sneer?
PaleyMoral Philosophy bk. v, ch. ix.
A fling is careless and commonly pettish; a taunt is intentionally insulting and provoking; the sneer is supercilious; the taunt is defiant. The jeer and gibe are uttered; the gibe is bitter, and often sly or covert; the jeer is rude and open. A scoff may be in act or word, and is commonly directed against that which claims honor, reverence, or worship. Compare BANTER.
Only an essentially vicious mind is capable of a sneer at virtue.
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How to use sneer in a sentence?
The world goes up and the world goes down, the sunshine follows the rain; and yesterday's sneer and yesterday's frown can never come over again.
Never be a cynic, even a gentle one. Never help out a sneer, even at the devil.
A sneer is often the sign of heartless malignity.
I often think of Shelley's famous insightful sonnet "Ozymandias" that brilliantly depicts the inevitable fall of all foolishly arrogant leaders and their huge empires built in pretensions to their self-proclaimed greatness. Nature and Time always prevail and overtake ultimately, when nothing remains of those great empires or the arrogant leaders.....and only the lone and level sands stretch far away. Vanity, false pride and arrogance never win, in my view. Humility is the true key success. Here is that famous sonnet "Ozymandias" by Percy Shelley, written in January 1818, nearly 200 years ago. "I met a traveller from an antique land Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand, Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown, And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command, Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed: And on the pedestal these words appear: 'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!' Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away.
Only little boys and old men sneer at love.
Translations for sneer
From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary
- somriure de menyspreu, somriure d'escarniCatalan, Valencian
- burlarse, burlaSpanish
- ivahymy, ivallisesti, irvistää, irvistysFinnish
- sogghigno, sogghignare, ghigno, ghignareItalian
- whakarāwai, whakahīhīMāori
- neus, optrekken, ophalen, deDutch
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