Simple Definition of debase
: to lower the value or reputation of (someone or something) : to make (someone or something) less respected
Examples of debase in a sentence
The governor debased himself by lying to the public.
The holiday has been debased by commercialism.
Did You Know?
Debase is often used to talk about someone's lowered status or character. People are constantly blustering about the debased tastes of the ordinary American, and especially the debased music of America's youth. A commentator might observe that both candidates had managed to debase themselves by the end of a political campaign. Debase has a special meaning in economics: From time to time, governments find that they need to quietly debase their countries' currency by reducing the percentage of valuable metal in its coins; if they don't, the metal may become more valuable than the coin and people will begin melting the coins down and reselling the metal.
First Known Use of debase
Synonym Discussion of debase
Seen and Heard
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