verb (used with object), de·terred, de·ter·ring.

  1. to discourage or restrain from acting or proceeding: The large dog deterred trespassers.
  2. to prevent; check; arrest: timber treated with creosote to deter rot.

verb -ters, -terring or -terred

  1. (tr) to discourage (from acting) or prevent (from occurring), usually by instilling fear, doubt, or anxiety

1570s, from Latin deterrere “to frighten from, discourage from,” from de- “away” (see de-) + terrere “frighten” (see terrible). Deterrent is from 1829.

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