denigrate

play
verb den·i·grate \ˈde-ni-ˌgrāt\

Definition of denigrate

denigrated

;

denigrating

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to attack the reputation of :  defame denigrate one's opponents

  3. 2 :  to deny the importance or validity of :  belittle denigrate their achievements

denigration

play \ˌde-ni-ˈgrā-shən\ noun

denigrative

play \ˈde-ni-ˌgrā-tiv\ adjective

denigrator

play \-ˌgrā-tər\ noun

denigratory

play \ˈde-ni-grə-ˌtȯr-ē\ adjective

denigrate was our Word of the Day on 10/22/2007. Hear the podcast!

Examples of denigrate in a Sentence

  1. Her story denigrates him as a person and as a teacher.

  2. No one is trying to denigrate the importance of a good education. We all know that it is crucial for success.

  3. denigrating the talents and achievements of women

Recent Examples of denigrate from the Web

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

Did You Know?

If you "denigrate" someone, you attempt to blacken their reputation. It makes sense, therefore, that "denigrate" can be traced back to the Latin verb denigrare, meaning "to blacken." When "denigrate" was first used in English in the 16th century, it meant to cast aspersions on someone's character or reputation. Eventually, it developed a second sense of "to make black" ("factory smoke denigrated the sky"), but this sense is somewhat rare in modern usage. Nowadays, of course, "denigrate" can also refer to belittling the worth or importance of someone or something.

Origin and Etymology of denigrate

Latin denigratus, past participle of denigrare, from de- + nigrare to blacken, from nigr-, niger black


First Known Use: 1526


DENIGRATE Defined for English Language Learners

denigrate

play
verb

Definition of denigrate for English Language Learners

  • : to say very critical and often unfair things about (someone)

  • : to make (something) seem less important or valuable



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