verb (used with object), improved, improving.
to bring into a more desirable or excellent condition: He took vitamins to improve his health.
to make (land) more useful, profitable, or valuable by enclosure, cultivation, etc.
to increase the value of (real property) by betterments, as the construction of buildings and sewers.
to make good use of; turn to account: He improved the stopover by seeing a client with offices there.
verb (used without object), improved, improving.
to increase in value, excellence, etc.; become better: The military situation is improving.
to make improvements, as by revision, addition, or change: None of the younger violinists have been able to improve on his interpretation of that work.

1425–75; late Middle English improuen, emprouen < Anglo-French emprouer to turn (something) into profit, derivative of phrase en prou into profit, equivalent to en (see en-1) + prou, Old French prou, preu < Late Latin prōde (est), by reanalysis of Latin prōdest (it) is beneficial, of use, with prōde taken as a neuter noun (cf. proud); v by association with prove, approve

improvable, adjective
improvability, improvableness, noun
improvably, adverb
improvingly, adverb
preimprove, verb (used with object), preimproved, preimproving.
quasi-improved, adjective
superimproved, adjective
well-improved, adjective

1. amend, emend. Improve, ameliorate, better imply bringing to a more desirable state. Improve usually implies remedying a lack or a felt need: to improve a process, oneself (as by gaining more knowledge ). Ameliorate a formal word, implies improving oppressive, unjust, or difficult conditions: to ameliorate working conditions. To better is to improve conditions which, though not bad, are unsatisfying: to better an attempt, oneself (gain a higher salary ).

1, 5. worsen. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To improve
World English Dictionary
improve (ɪmˈpruːv)
1.  to make or become better in quality; ameliorate
2.  (tr) to make (buildings, land, etc) more valuable by additions or betterment
3.  (intr; usually foll by on or upon) to achieve a better standard or quality in comparison (with): to improve on last year's crop
4.  informal (Austral) on the improve improving
[C16: from Anglo-French emprouer to turn to profit, from en prou into profit, from prou profit, from Late Latin prōde beneficial, from Latin prōdesse to be advantageous, from pro-1 + esse to be]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

late 15c., "to use to one's profit," from Anglo-Fr. emprouwer "to turn to profit" (late 13c.), from O.Fr. en-, causative prefix, + prou "profit," from L. prode "advantageous" (see proud). Meaning "to raise to a better quality or condition" first recorded 1610s. Phrase improve
the occasion retains the etymological sense. Meaning "to turn land to profit" (by clearing it, erecting buildings, etc.) was in Anglo-Fr. (13c.) and was retained in the American colonies.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Others recommend putting salt in the coffee grounds, rather than the final
  product, to improve the brew's flavor.
Humans are deeply social creatures, after all, so it seems logical that good
  social relations should improve our lives.
When it arrived there were many expectations that it would improve education
  and everything else.
After the paragraph has been written, it should be examined to see whether
  subdivision will not improve it.
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