de·​mote | \ di-ˈmōt How to pronounce demote (audio) , ˌdē- \
demoted; demoting

Definition of demote

transitive verb

1 : to reduce to a lower grade or rank demote a student was demoted from major to captain
2 : to relegate to a less important position a pitcher demoted to the bullpen

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Other Words from demote

demotion \ di-​ˈmō-​shən How to pronounce demotion (audio) , ˌdē-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for demote



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Examples of demote in a Sentence

Teachers can choose to demote a student to a lower grade. The army major was demoted to captain.
Recent Examples on the Web Huston demoted Lucas from vice chair of the standing committee on government reduction, though Lucas remains a member. Chris Sikich, Indianapolis Star, "Speaker sanctions lawmaker who posted image of black kids celebrating 'free money'," 15 May 2020 The Navy demoted Gallagher, but the president ordered his full rank to be restored and called for the Navy not to strip Gallagher of his Trident. Melissa Quinn, CBS News, "Joint chiefs chairman says Trump's intervention in military justice cases won't lead to breakdown in discipline," 11 Dec. 2019 The 6-foot-2, 197-pound Canadian has appeared in 88 games over two seasons, demoted to finish in the minors both years. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Time for Detroit Red Wings' Dennis Cholowski to show he belongs in this rebuild," 4 May 2020 After the Navy demoted Chief Gallagher for the one relatively minor charge on which he was convicted, Mr. Trump reversed the demotion. Eric Schmitt, New York Times, "An Accidental Navy Chief Steers His Service Through a Storm," 1 May 2020 But Trump designated a new acting IG at the Pentagon, thereby demoting Fine and making him ineligible to chair the committee. Laura Davison,, "New panel to oversee relief spending already facing controversy," 27 Apr. 2020 These employers also cannot fire, suspend or demote anyone for adhering to the ordinance. Justin Phillips,, "San Francisco officials look to strengthen coronavirus protections for grocery, delivery workers," 16 Apr. 2020 Regulators in the United Kingdom, Australia and a host of other countries recently have sought to require Facebook, Google and other online services to spot, disable or demote abusive content quickly or face tough punishments. Washington Post, "Congress, Justice Department take aim at tech, hoping to halt spread of child sexual exploitation online," 3 Mar. 2020 Sellers say Amazon’s ranking algorithm demotes products that are out of stock. Jon Emont, WSJ, "Out of Stock: Coronavirus in China Threatens Amazon Sellers," 26 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'demote.' 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 demote

circa 1891, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for demote

de- + -mote (as in promote)

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Time Traveler for demote

Time Traveler

The first known use of demote was circa 1891

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Statistics for demote

Last Updated

24 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Demote.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2020.

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How to pronounce demote (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of demote

: to change the rank or position of (someone) to a lower or less important one


de·​mote | \ di-ˈmōt How to pronounce demote (audio) \
demoted; demoting

Kids Definition of demote

: to reduce to a lower grade or rank He was demoted to private.

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for demote

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with demote

Spanish Central: Translation of demote

Nglish: Translation of demote for Spanish Speakers

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