To mistrust is to feel uneasy about someone or something. If you mistrust bus drivers, you may decide to walk instead.

Are you suspicious of clowns in general? Then you mistrust them. This verb has a very similar meaning to distrust — as nouns, both words mean "a lack of trust." A subtle difference between the two is that distrust tends to be based on a bad experience (if a clown once pinched you, you will probably always distrust that clown). Mistrust, on the other hand, is a more general sense of suspicion.

Definitions of mistrust
  1. verb
    regard as untrustworthy; regard with suspicion; have no faith or confidence in
    synonyms: disbelieve, distrust, suspect
    see moresee less
    bank, rely, swear, trust
    have confidence or faith in
    lack confidence in or have doubts about
    type of:
    disbelieve, discredit
    reject as false; refuse to accept
  2. noun
    the trait of not trusting others
    synonyms: distrust, distrustfulness
    see moresee less
    trust, trustfulness, trustingness
    the trait of believing in the honesty and reliability of others
    suspicion, suspiciousness
    being of a suspicious nature
    type of:
    a distinguishing feature of your personal nature
  3. noun
    doubt about someone's honesty
    synonyms: distrust, misgiving, suspicion
    see moresee less
    type of:
    doubt, doubtfulness, dubiety, dubiousness, incertitude, uncertainty
    the state of being unsure of something
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week