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denial (n.)

1520s, "refusal to grant what is requested or desired;" see deny + -al (2). Replaced earlier denyance (late 15c.). Sense of "act of asserting to the contrary, contradicting" is from 1570s; that of "refusal to accept or acknowledge" is from 1580s. In some 19c. uses, it really means "self-denial." Meaning "unconscious suppression of painful or embarrassing feelings" first attested 1914 in A.A. Brill's translation of Freud's "Psychopathology of Everyday Life"; hence the phrase in denial, popularized 1980s.

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Definitions of denial from WordNet

denial (n.)
the act of refusing to comply (as with a request);
it resulted in a complete denial of his privileges
denial (n.)
the act of asserting that something alleged is not true;
Synonyms: disaffirmation
denial (n.)
(psychiatry) a defense mechanism that denies painful thoughts;
denial (n.)
renunciation of your own interests in favor of the interests of others;
Synonyms: abnegation / self-abnegation / self-denial / self-renunciation
denial (n.)
a defendant's answer or plea denying the truth of the charges against him;
Synonyms: defense / defence / demurrer
From wordnet.princeton.edu