deplete

verb
de·​plete | \ di-ˈplēt How to pronounce deplete (audio) \
depleted; depleting

Definition of deplete

transitive verb

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

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Other Words from deplete

depletable \ di-​ˈplē-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce depletable (audio) \ adjective
depleter \ di-​ˈplē-​tər How to pronounce depleter (audio) \ noun
depletion \ di-​ˈplē-​shən How to pronounce depletion (audio) \ noun
depletive \ di-​ˈplē-​tiv How to pronounce depletive (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for deplete

Synonyms

absorb, burn, consume, devour, drain, draw down, exhaust, expend, play out, spend, use up

Antonyms

renew, replace

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Choose the Right Synonym for deplete

deplete, drain, exhaust, impoverish, bankrupt mean to deprive of something essential to existence or potency. deplete implies a reduction in number or quantity so as to endanger the ability to function. depleting our natural resources drain implies a gradual withdrawal and ultimate deprivation of what is necessary to an existence. personal tragedy had drained him of all spirit exhaust stresses a complete emptying. her lecture exhausted the subject impoverish suggests a deprivation of something essential to richness or productiveness. impoverished soil bankrupt suggests impoverishment to the point of imminent collapse. war had bankrupted the nation of resources

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.

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.

Recent Examples on the Web

Still bitter about those outcomes, communities whose coffers had been depleted by the opioid crisis decided to sign with private lawyers, circumventing the states. Jan Hoffman, BostonGlobe.com, "States clash with cities over potential opioids settlement payouts," 5 Aug. 2019 Still bitter about those outcomes, communities whose coffers had been depleted by the opioid crisis decided to sign with private lawyers, circumventing the states. Jan Hoffman, New York Times, "States Clash With Cities Over Potential Opioids Settlement Payouts," 5 Aug. 2019 Development only makes the problem worse because communities replenish shorelines that are eroding or have been depleted by storms. Ben Finley, Fox News, "AP Explains: Why North Carolina is vulnerable to hurricanes," 12 Sep. 2018 As such, governments equally ravaged and depleted by the opioid crisis will be implicitly squaring off in bankruptcy court, speaking for and against the Purdue filing. Jan Hoffman, New York Times, "Would a Purdue Bankruptcy Protect the Sacklers? Good Question.," 16 Sep. 2019 For the Chargers, depleted by injuries in their secondary and on offense, that means next man up, and the man after that, and maybe the man after that. Los Angeles Times, "Column: ‘Next man up’ can’t let Chargers down amid mounting injuries," 13 Sep. 2019 In saying that though, due to the Cherries' defence being depleted by injuries, Everton's front line should prove too much for Eddie Howe's men. SI.com, "Bournemouth vs Everton Preview: Where to Watch, Buy Tickets, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News," 12 Sep. 2019 There might not be much of a choice, at least for a while, as the Wildcats break in new starters on a defense depleted by departures, especially in the secondary. Gentry Estes, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky football's offense seems ready to reinvent itself and throw the football more," 2 Aug. 2019 Development only makes the problem worse because communities replenish shorelines that are eroding or have been depleted by storms. Ben Finley, The Seattle Times, "AP Explains: Why North Carolina is vulnerable to hurricanes," 11 Sep. 2018

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

1807, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for deplete

Latin depletus, past participle of deplēre, from de- + plēre to fill — more at full

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Statistics for deplete

Last Updated

21 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deplete

The first known use of deplete was in 1807

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More Definitions for deplete

deplete

verb

English Language Learners Definition of deplete

: to use most or all of (something important) : to greatly reduce the amount of (something)

deplete

verb
de·​plete | \ di-ˈplēt How to pronounce deplete (audio) \
depleted; depleting

Kids Definition of deplete

: to reduce in amount by using up The soil was depleted of minerals.

deplete

transitive verb
de·​plete | \ di-ˈplēt How to pronounce deplete (audio) \
depleted; depleting

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on deplete

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with deplete

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deplete

Spanish Central: Translation of deplete

Nglish: Translation of deplete for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deplete for Arabic Speakers

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