Dictionary

impoverish

verb im·pov·er·ish \im-ˈpäv-rish, -ˈpä-və-\

: to make (someone) poor

: to use up the strength or richness of (something, such as land)

Full Definition of IMPOVERISH

transitive verb
1
:  to make poor
2
:  to deprive of strength, richness, or fertility by depleting or draining of something essential
im·pov·er·ish·er noun
im·pov·er·ish·ment \-mənt\ noun

Examples of IMPOVERISH

  1. The dictator enriched himself but impoverished his people.
  2. Poor farming practices impoverished the soil.

Origin of IMPOVERISH

Middle English enpoverisshen, from Anglo-French empoveriss-, stem of empoverir, from en- + povre poor — more at poor
First Known Use: 15th century

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