To disillusion is to make someone realize their belief isn't true. If your cousin believes that the Tooth Fairy will come in the night, take her tooth and sprinkle her with fairy dust. It would be too cruel to disillusion her.

When you disillusion someone, you take away a false belief, or an illusion. Your parents' divorce might disillusion your romantic ideas of marriage, and a political candidate you supported enthusiastically could disillusion if she doesn't follow through on her promises. The disappointment you feel as a result of being disillusioned is also called disillusion, like the disillusion that results when your older sister tells you the truth about the Easter Bunny.

Definitions of disillusion
  1. noun
    freeing from false belief or illusions
    synonyms: disenchantment, disillusionment
    see moresee less
    type of:
    edification, sophistication
    uplifting enlightenment
  2. verb
    free from enchantment
    synonyms: disenchant
    see moresee less
    delight, enchant, enrapture, enthral, enthrall, ravish, transport
    hold spellbound
    type of:
    disappoint, let down
    fail to meet the hopes or expectations of
Commonly confused words

disillusion / dissolution

To disillusion someone is to rid her of an illusion, like lifting up the curtain to show that the wizard is just a man. Dissolution, on the other hand, is when everything falls apart. Both are disappointing.

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