de·​val·​ue | \(ˌ)dē-ˈval-(ˌ)yü \

Definition of devalue 

transitive verb

1 : to institute the devaluation of (money)

2 : to lessen the value of

intransitive verb

: to institute devaluation

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Examples of devalue in a Sentence

The government has decided to devalue its currency. Economic woes forced the government to devalue. He argues that placing too many requirements on schools devalues the education they provide.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Many echoed Givens's predictions that the show could cause many impressionable young viewers to not only devalue themselves based on weight and physical appearance but also to potentially turn to destructive behaviors, such as disordered eating. Andrea Park, Allure, "Why People Are Calling on Netflix to Cancel Insatiable, Its "Toxic" New Series About a Plus-Size Teen," 20 July 2018 But, husbands overstate their own earnings less than wives do, and wives devalue their own earnings less than husbands do. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Couples Are Lying to the Census Bureau When the Woman Earns More Money," 18 July 2018 Italy would likely default on its debts, and its replacement currency would be greatly devalued. New York Times, "Why Italy’s Political Turmoil Is Causing Financial Angst Elsewhere," 29 May 2018 Like Sweden, Americans have devalued parenting, and specifically motherhood, and are creating emotionally impoverished young people who have difficulty in sustaining intimate relationships and functioning as independent adults. Erica Komisar, WSJ, "The Human Cost of Sweden’s Welfare State," 11 July 2018 The yuan—which in February reached its highest level since China’s central bank devalued it in August 2015—has pulled back a bit in recent months during the dollar rally. Joanne Chiu, WSJ, "How China’s Yuan Is Outperforming Major Currencies," 6 June 2018 Shortly after, the company's stocks fell almost 4 percent, devaluing it by about $600 million. Erin Reimel, Glamour, "Here's Why You Won't See Chrissy Teigen on Snapchat Anymore," 25 Mar. 2018 Forex agents use wheelbarrows to transfer stacks of devalued currency for customers in the money-exchange district of Hargeisa. Matina Stevis-gridneff, WSJ, "An Isolated Country Runs on Mobile Money," 8 July 2018 Ellison’s work often challenged characterization—and sometimes coherency—even as the author also railed against publishers and media companies that devalued his and others’ contributions. Glenn Fleishman, Fortune, "5 Great Works From Acclaimed Sci-Fi Author Harlan Ellison, Who Died at 84," 29 June 2018

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

1918, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Statistics for devalue

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for devalue

The first known use of devalue was in 1918

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More Definitions for devalue



English Language Learners Definition of devalue

finance : to lower the value of a country's money so that it is worth less when it is traded with another country's money

: to cause (something or someone) to seem or to be less valuable or important


transitive verb
de·​val·​ue | \(ˌ)dē-ˈval-(ˌ)yü \
devalued; devaluing

Legal Definition of devalue 

1 : to institute the devaluation of (money)

2 : to lessen the value of devaluing assets

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Comments on devalue

What made you want to look up devalue? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

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