Definition of deplete
1 : to empty of a principal substance <The lake was depleted of water.> <depleting the country of its natural resources>
2 : to lessen markedly in quantity, content, power, or value <deplete our life savings> <their depleted resources>
depletableplay \-ˈplē-tə-bəl\ adjective
depleterplay \-ˈplē-tər\ noun
depletionplay \-ˈplē-shən\ noun
depletiveplay \-ˈplē-tiv\ adjective
Examples of deplete in a sentence
Activities such as logging and mining deplete our natural resources.
We completely depleted our life savings when we bought our new house.
Did You Know?
The de- prefix often means "do the opposite of", so deplete means the opposite of "fill". Thus, for example, a kitchen's food supplies can be rapidly depleted by hungry teenagers. But deplete often suggests something more serious. Desertions can deplete an army; layoffs can deplete an office staff; and too much time in bed can rapidly deplete your muscular strength.
Origin and Etymology of deplete
Latin depletus, past participle of deplēre, from de- + plēre to fill — more at full
First Known Use: 1807
Synonym Discussion of deplete
DEPLETE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of deplete for English Language Learners
: to use most or all of (something important) : to greatly reduce the amount of (something)
DEPLETE Defined for Kids
Definition of deplete for Students
: to reduce in amount by using up <The soil was depleted of minerals.>
Word Root of deplete
The Latin word plēre, meaning “to fill,” gives us the root ple. Words from the Latin plēre have something to do with filling or being full. Anything replete with something is full of that particular thing or quality. Something complete is totally full and finished. To deplete is to lessen the amount of something that was once full. A supplement is something that fills in something that is missing.
Medical Definition of deplete
: to empty (as the blood vessels) of a principal substance <a body depleted by excessive blood loss> <tissues depleted of vitamins>
Seen and Heard
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