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From Latin refūtāre, present active infinitive form of refūtō (I oppose”, “I refute). The -i- was an influence by fiutare (to sniff).


  • IPA(key): /ri.fjuˈta.re/, [r̺ifjuˈt̪äːr̺e̞]
  • (file)
  • Stress: rifiutàre
  • Hyphenation: ri‧fiu‧ta‧re



  1. (transitive) to be unwilling to accept or receive; to refuse, decline, reject
  2. (transitive) to be unwilling to give or concede; to deny
    Ci sono favori che ad un amico non si possono rifiutare.There are favors you just can't deny a friend. (literally, “There are favors that, to a friend, one can't deny.”)
  3. (transitive, followed by di) to be unwilling to do (something); to refuse
    Mia sorella rifiuta di parlarmi.My sister refuses to talk to me.
  4. (archaic, rare, transitive) to give up (something), to refuse
    • 1472, Dante Alighieri, La divina commedia: Purgatorio [The Divine Comedy: Purgatory] (paperback, in Italian), Bompiani, published 2001, Canto I, lines 70–72, page 93:
      Or ti piaccia gradir la sua venuta: ¶ libertà va cercando, ch'è sì cara, ¶ come sa chi per lei vita rifiuta.
      Now may it please thee to vouchsafe his coming: ¶ he seeketh Liberty, which is so dear, ¶ as knoweth he who life for her refuses.
  5. (archaic, rare, transitive) to disown
    Il Leopardi rifiutò molte sue poesie giovanili.Leopardi disowned many of the poems of his youth.


Derived terms[edit]