diminish

verb
di·​min·​ish | \ də-ˈmi-nish \
diminished; diminishing; diminishes

Definition of diminish

transitive verb

1 : to make less or cause to appear less diminish an army's strength His role in the company was diminished.
2 : to lessen the authority, dignity, or reputation of : belittle diminish a rival's accomplishments
3 architecture : to cause to taper (see taper entry 1 sense 1) a diminished column

intransitive verb

1 : to become gradually less (as in size or importance) : dwindle the side effects tend to diminish over time
2 architecture : taper

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Other Words from diminish

diminishable \ -​ni-​shə-​bəl \ adjective
diminishment \ -​mənt \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for diminish

decrease, lessen, diminish, reduce, abate, dwindle mean to grow or make less. decrease suggests a progressive decline in size, amount, numbers, or intensity. slowly decreased the amount of pressure lessen suggests a decline in amount rather than in number. has been unable to lessen her debt diminish emphasizes a perceptible loss and implies its subtraction from a total. his visual acuity has diminished reduce implies a bringing down or lowering. you must reduce your caloric intake abate implies a reducing of something excessive or oppressive in force or amount. the storm abated dwindle implies progressive lessening and is applied to things growing visibly smaller. their provisions dwindled slowly

Examples of diminish in a Sentence

The strength of the army was greatly diminished by outbreaks of disease. The drug's side effects should diminish over time. Nothing could diminish the importance of his contributions.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Pasadena is struggling to end suicides from the span without diminishing its historic beauty From its western entrance, Pasadena’s Colorado Street Bridge billows gently to the left 150 feet above the Arroyo Seco. Matthew Segal, Los Angeles Magazine, "The Complicated Case of the Colorado Street Bridge," 18 June 2018 Other experts acknowledged that the summit probably did succeed in reducing the danger to Americans, at least for now, by diminishing the chance of a nuclear exchange with the United States. Joby Warrick, Washington Post, "North Korea’s dispersed and hidden weapons complex highlights the challenge of denuclearization," 13 June 2018 China, too, will be delighted that America has been drawn into a protracted negotiation with North Korea—something that reduces the chance of war without diminishing China’s clout in the region. The Economist, "Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un sign the blandest of agreements," 12 June 2018 Jeep has added a wide array of welcome comfort and tech updates without diminishing the Wrangler's off-road prowess. Travis Langness, Edmunds, USA TODAY, "Edmunds: 7 off-roaders that can be driven right off the lot," 11 June 2018 The writing on the wall flashed neon; Hodges became suspicious that there was far more to his unemployment than diminishing skill: The list of his infractions is long. Steve Heisler, Chicago Reader, "Archive Dive / Sports Former Chicago Bulls guard Craig Hodges was dropped in 1992 for suspicious reasons," 4 June 2018 David Kennedy accepts this, and plays up the punchy parts without diminishing the complex explanations of selling short, exchanging currency, laundering money and maneuvering bull and bear markets. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, ""Invisible Hand" Has Fresh Urgency At TheaterWorks," 1 June 2018 And with global oil demand growing strongly, hedge funds will shift their focus on diminishing global spare capacity as OPEC returns barrels to the market. Houston Chronicle, "Under pressure from Trump, Saudis put brakes on oil price rally," 25 May 2018 But Patrick Melrose is also darkly entertaining, veering between young Patrick’s anguish and older Patrick’s episodes of situational comedy without diminishing either. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Patrick Melrose Is a Lacerating Tour de Force," 10 May 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for diminish

Middle English deminishen, alteration of diminuen, from Anglo-French diminuer, from Late Latin diminuere, alteration of Latin deminuere, from de- + minuere to lessen — more at minor

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Statistics for diminish

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for diminish

The first known use of diminish was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for diminish

diminish

verb

English Language Learners Definition of diminish

: to become or to cause (something) to become less in size, importance, etc.

: to lessen the authority or reputation of (someone or something) : to describe (something) as having little value or importance

diminish

verb
di·​min·​ish | \ də-ˈmi-nish \
diminished; diminishing

Kids Definition of diminish

1 : to make less or cause to seem less … he didn't want to diminish any chance he might have of being found.— Gary Paulsen, Hatchet
2 : belittle
3 : to become gradually less or smaller The number of wild birds is diminishing.

Other Words from diminish

diminishment \ -​mənt \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on diminish

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with diminish

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for diminish

Spanish Central: Translation of diminish

Nglish: Translation of diminish for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of diminish for Arabic Speakers

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