deteriorate

verb
de·​te·​ri·​o·​rate | \ di-ˈtir-ē-ə-ˌrāt How to pronounce deteriorate (audio) , dē-\
deteriorated; deteriorating

Definition of deteriorate

transitive verb

1 : to make inferior in quality or value : impair Exposure to sunlight may deteriorate the paint.

intransitive verb

: to become impaired in quality, functioning, or condition : degenerate allowed a tradition of academic excellence to deteriorate his health deteriorated

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Other Words from deteriorate

deteriorative \ di-​ˈtir-​ē-​ə-​ˌrā-​tiv How to pronounce deteriorative (audio) , dē-​ \ adjective

Examples of deteriorate in a Sentence

efforts to save a deteriorating rain forest Exposure to rain and sun will gradually deteriorate the paint.

Recent Examples on the Web

The deteriorating security situation also forced a humiliating scaling down of a flag raising ceremony meant to be a focus of national pride. Time Staff, Time, "On the Anniversary of Its Return to Chinese Sovereignty, Hong Kong Flies the Rebel Flag," 1 July 2019 Once recognized as a symbol of the city’s growth and achievements, the building was shuttered in the mid-1990s and deteriorated into an eyesore that was deemed unsalvageable. Jennifer Bolton, Houston Chronicle, "Pasadena’s only skyscraper to fall July 21," 1 July 2019 Newcastle did put a one-year contract offer on the table, however Benítez wanted more control over transfers and the manager's trust in the owner had deteriorated badly during his tenure. SI.com, "Mike Ashley Deflects Blame on to Prospective New Owners for Rafa Benítez's Newcastle Departure," 30 June 2019 Relations with Iran have been deteriorating in recent weeks. Katiana Krawchenko, CBS News, "Can the U.S. force Iran to capitulate?," 28 June 2019 As water runs out, the country may have to confront a series of associated problems: food insecurity, vulnerability during heatwaves, disease due to deteriorating sanitation and regional conflicts over water access. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "India has just five years to solve its water crisis, experts fear. Otherwise hundreds of millions of lives will be in danger," 28 June 2019 Trust among regional states was never high, and has deteriorated over the last three decades. Yohannes Gedamu, Quartz Africa, "The underlying tension behind Ethiopia’s flawed federal system and its risks," 26 June 2019 When vacant lots and deteriorating urban spaces are transformed into more appealing and useful places for residents, violence and crime typically decline in the immediate vicinity. Lincoln Larson, The Conversation, "Can parks help cities fight crime?," 25 June 2019 According to one recent survey, the housing crunch, bad traffic, and deteriorating quality of life have 44% of residents planning to leave the region. Stephane Kasriel, Fortune, "Sorry Google—Funding More Homes Won’t Solve the Bay Area Housing Crunch," 22 June 2019

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

1572, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for deteriorate

Late Latin deterioratus, past participle of deteriorare, from Latin deterior worse, from de- + -ter (suffix as in Latin uter which of two) + -ior (comparative suffix) — more at whether entry 2, -er

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Statistics for deteriorate

Last Updated

4 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deteriorate

The first known use of deteriorate was in 1572

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More Definitions for deteriorate

deteriorate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of deteriorate

: to become worse as time passes
: to make (something) worse

deteriorate

verb
de·​te·​ri·​o·​rate | \ di-ˈtir-ē-ə-ˌrāt How to pronounce deteriorate (audio) \
deteriorated; deteriorating

Kids Definition of deteriorate

: to make or become worse or of less value Their relationship deteriorated.

deteriorate

intransitive verb
de·​te·​ri·​o·​rate | \ di-ˈtir-ē-ə-ˌrāt How to pronounce deteriorate (audio) \
deteriorated; deteriorating

Medical Definition of deteriorate

: to become impaired in quality, functioning, or condition : degenerate her health deteriorated deteriorating vision

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Comments on deteriorate

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