refuse to (do something)

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refuse to (do something)

To indicate or express that one is unwilling or determined not to do something. He refused to sign the contract because he would have to relinquish creative control of the project. I tried to call to apologize to her, but she's refusing to answer her phone.
See also: refuse
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

refuse something to someone

to deny someone permission to receive or use something. You wouldn't refuse water to me, would you? Nothing at all was refused to the new employee.
See also: refuse

refuse to do something

to reject doing something; to reject a request to do something. I absolutely refuse to go there! We all refused to break the law.
See also: refuse
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in classic literature ?
Could she say, "I refuse to content this pining hunger?" It would be refusing to do for him dead, what she was almost sure to do for him living.
He denies refusing to do the work, saying he should not have to wear the vest.
A bald, cold-eyed lieutenant with a look of permanent disgust on his face informed me that I'd been punished for refusing to do my job, and asked me whether I was ready to go back to work.