corrode

verb
cor·​rode | \kə-ˈrōd \
corroded; corroding

Definition of corrode 

transitive verb

1 : to eat away by degrees as if by gnawing especially : to wear away gradually usually by chemical action the metal was corroded beyond repair

2 : to weaken or destroy gradually : undermine manners and miserliness that corrode the human spirit— Bernard De Voto

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Other Words from corrode

corrodible \ kə-​ˈrō-​də-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms for corrode

Synonyms

bite (at), eat, erode, fret, gnaw, nibble

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Did You Know?

Corrode comes from Latin corrodere ("to gnaw to pieces"), a combination of the suffix "cor-" (used here as an intensifier with the meaning of "completely") and the verb "rodere" ("to gnaw"). At one time, "corrode" was used to literally indicate the action of gnawing away, as in "woodworms corroded the wood." But it is the more figurative senses from the action of gnawing or eating away that have persisted, as in "salt water corroded the iron" or "graphic content on television and the Internet is corroding the moral fabric of society."

Examples of corrode in a Sentence

Rainwater may corrode the steel containers. Over time, the pipes become corroded and need to be replaced. After a few weeks in the ocean, the boat began to corrode. Years of lies and secrets had corroded their relationship.
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Recent Examples on the Web

State and federal regulations now restrict its use, but lead in plumbing remains a hazard as old pipes corrode and chemicals seep into the drinking water. Lauryn Schroeder, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Does your school have lead in its drinking water?," 5 July 2018 Some areas lacked drainage holes and standing water further corroded the structure. Mary Shanklin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "UCF stadium has failing areas, report shows; some fixed, school says," 13 Oct. 2017 The unemployment rate is a low 4.1%, but one reason for the shortage are government benefits that corrode a culture of work. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Working on Food Stamps," 11 Apr. 2018 The latest change at the top of the company will further corrode investor confidence in the retailer, Wedbush Securities analysts Michael Pachter said in an interview. Allison Prang, WSJ, "GameStop CEO Leaves After Three Months in Role," 11 May 2018 Concern about lead in water supplies intensified in recent years after corroding pipes in the city of Flint, Michigan, led to widespread lead contamination in its water system. Lauryn Schroeder, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Does your school have lead in its drinking water?," 5 July 2018 Tesla is recalling almost half of all the vehicles the company has so far produced, after corroding bolts that could lead to the loss of power steering has forced the company to fix 123,000 of its Model S sedans. NBC News, "Tesla recalls almost half the cars it ever built, as shares tank and Musk's billions shrink," 30 Mar. 2018 In regards to the CX-7, water and salt on the road could potentially corrode the ball joint fittings, which can cause the front lower control arm to separate from the vehicle, making steering much more difficult. Cory Stieg, Good Housekeeping, "Mazda Recalls Millions of Vehicles Worldwide," 1 Sep. 2016 Drigo alleged that the supervisor gave the two men many of his formal duties and that Drigo was assigned the more difficult job of working on older vehicles, which were often corroded from salt and snow. Meghan E. Irons, BostonGlobe.com, "City mechanic awarded $50,000 in discrimination case," 30 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'corrode.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of corrode

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for corrode

Middle English corroden, borrowed from Latin corrōdere "to gnaw, chew up," from cor-, variant before r of com- com- + rōdere "to gnaw, nibble, eat away" — more at rodent

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Statistics for corrode

Last Updated

9 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for corrode

The first known use of corrode was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for corrode

corrode

verb

English Language Learners Definition of corrode

: to slowly break apart and destroy (metal, an object, etc.) through a chemical process

: to gradually destroy or weaken (something)

corrode

verb
cor·​rode | \kə-ˈrōd \
corroded; corroding

Kids Definition of corrode

1 : to wear away little by little (as by rust or acid)

2 : to gradually destroy or weaken corroding traditions

corrode

verb
cor·​rode | \kə-ˈrōd \
corroded; corroding

Medical Definition of corrode 

transitive verb

: to eat away by degrees as if by gnawing especially : to wear away gradually usually by chemical action

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Comments on corrode

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