degrade

[dih-greyd or for 3, dee-greyd]
verb (used with object), degraded, degrading.
1.
to lower in dignity or estimation; bring into contempt: He felt they were degrading him by making him report to the supervisor.
2.
to lower in character or quality; debase.
3.
to reduce (someone) to a lower rank, degree, etc.; deprive of office, rank, status, or title, especially as a punishment: degraded from director to assistant director.
4.
to reduce in amount, strength, intensity, etc.
5.
Physical Geography. to wear down by erosion, as hills. Compare aggrade.
6.
Chemistry. to break down (a compound, especially an organic hydrocarbon).
verb (used without object), degraded, degrading.
7.
to become degraded; weaken or worsen; deteriorate.
8.
Chemistry. (especially of an organic hydrocarbon compound) to break down or decompose.

Origin:
1275–1325; Middle English degraden < Late Latin dēgradāre, equivalent to Latin dē- de- + grad(us) grade + -āre infinitive suffix

degrader, noun


1. disgrace, dishonor, discredit. See humble. 2. abase, vitiate. 3. demote, depose, downgrade, lower, cashier, break.


1, 2. exalt. 3. promote.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
degrade (dɪˈɡreɪd)
 
vb
1.  (tr) to reduce in worth, character, etc; disgrace; dishonour
2.  (tr) to reduce in rank, status, or degree; remove from office; demote
3.  (tr) to reduce in strength, quality, intensity, etc
4.  Compare aggrade to reduce or be reduced by erosion or down-cutting, as a land surface or bed of a river
5.  chem to decompose or be decomposed into atoms or smaller molecules
 
[C14: from Late Latin dēgradāre, from Latin de- + gradus rank, degree]
 
de'grader
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

degrade
early 14c., from O.Fr. degrader (12c.), from des- "down" + L. gradus "step" (see grade).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for degrade
A particular high respect for humanity and repugnance for those who degrade any human.
The benefit of magnesium is that it does not degrade in outer space.
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