The email exchanges started out as cordial, if cold, but gradually grew more confrontational.
Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away.
They enticed Yanukovych into an economic deal that would have gradually diminished Russian influence in Ukraine.
early 15c., "having steps or ridges," from Medieval Latin gradualis, from Latin gradus "step" (see grade). Meaning "arranged by degrees" is from 1540s; that of "taking place by degrees" is from 1690s.