demeaning

[dih-mee-ning]
adjective
that demeans; debasing; degrading: Being forced to apologize when I had done nothing wrong was a demeaning task.

Origin:
1875–80; demean1 + -ing2

Dictionary.com Unabridged

demean

1 [dih-meen]
verb (used with object)
to lower in dignity, honor, or standing; debase: He demeaned himself by accepting the bribe.

Origin:
1595–1605; de- + mean2, modeled on debase


degrade, humble, humiliate, mortify.


dignify, honor.

demean

2 [dih-meen]
verb (used with object)
1.
to conduct or behave (oneself) in a specified manner.
noun
2.
Archaic. demeanor.

Origin:
1250–1300; Middle English deme(i)nen < Anglo-French, Old French demener, equivalent to de- de- + mener to lead, conduct < Latin mināre to drive, minārī to threaten

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
demean1 (dɪˈmiːn)
 
vb
(tr) to lower (oneself) in dignity, status, or character; humble; debase
 
[C17: see de-, mean²; on the model of debase]

demean2 (dɪˈmiːn)
 
vb
rare (tr) to behave or conduct (oneself) in a specified way
 
[C13: from Old French demener, from de- + mener to lead, drive, from Latin mināre to drive (animals), from minārī to use threats]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

demean
"lower in dignity," c.1600, perhaps from de- "down" + mean (adj.) and modeled on debase. Indistinguishable in some uses from obsolete demean (see demeanor) which influenced it and may be its true source.

demeaning
1880, pp. adj. from demean.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
That sounded a little demeaning upon reading.
Even the term chick lit has created a backlash, with some practitioners
  believing the term is demeaning and limiting.
Hey, it's show business, it's supposed to be demeaning.
She is seeking support for a federal law that would ban demeaning and
  mean-spirited comments on memorial sites.
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