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[dih-moht] /dɪˈmoʊt/
verb (used with object), demoted, demoting.
to reduce to a lower grade, rank, class, or position (opposed to promote):
They demoted the careless waiter to busboy.
1890-95, Americanism; de- + (pro)mote
Related forms
demotion, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for demoted
  • Last summer, astronomers demoted the icy sphere to dwarf planet status.
  • Others think time ought to be promoted rather than demoted.
  • Even though it has been demoted, it still has great technical and cultural significance.
  • They have been demoted, and there is no way to sugar-coat that.
  • She was eventually demoted, and lost her laboratory.
  • So even though her numeric scores didn't change, she was demoted to bronze.
  • Most have been demoted, had their pay docked, or simply been reprimanded.
  • However, this did not go down well with his own party and he was demoted to a minister without portfolio.
  • Jobs tried to launch a coup, but was caught and demoted.
  • New pedagogy, new methods, reflection and learning by research experience will be demoted and efficiency will be promoted.
British Dictionary definitions for demoted


(transitive) to lower in rank or position; relegate
Derived Forms
demotion, noun
Word Origin
C19: from de- + (pro)mote
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for demoted



1881, American English coinage from de- + stem of promote. Said to have been Midwestern in origin.

Regarding an antithesis to 'promote,' the word universally in use in Cambridge, in Harvard College, is drop. The same word is in use in the leading schools here (Boston). I hope I may be counted every time against such barbarisms as 'demote' and 'retromote.' [Edward Everett Hale, 1892, letter to the publishers of "Funk & Wagnalls' Standard Dictionary"]
Related: Demoted; demoting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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