diminish

verb
di·​min·​ish | \ də-ˈmi-nish How to pronounce diminish (audio) \
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 \ də-​ˈmi-​ni-​shə-​bəl How to pronounce diminishable (audio) \ adjective
diminishment \ də-​ˈmi-​nish-​mənt How to pronounce diminishment (audio) \ 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

With Machado batting third, the spot once controlled by Braun before age and injuries diminished him, scoring runs should be considerably easier. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Haudricourt: Brewers looking to go big with Manny Machado, who is an absolutely perfect fit," 13 July 2018 In the months since, Mulvaney has been criticized by consumer advocates for trying to diminish the agency's powers. James Rufus Koren, latimes.com, "Wells Fargo to pay $1 billion in fines over auto, mortgage lending abuses," 20 Apr. 2018 The drama of costume and camp isn’t diminished in Larry’s bias jersey pieces, like a dress-meets-cape aquamarine number worn with a feathered hat and coordinating muff. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Rick Owens Loves Larry LeGaspi—And You Should Too," 23 Jan. 2019 Because their essential oils are diminished by heat, herbs are added toward the end of savory cooking time as a way of balancing flavor. Francine Maroukian, Popular Mechanics, "How Herbs and Spices Can Make You Cook Like a Pro," 13 Nov. 2018 That the trust in that great agency is diminished because of the actions of those few at the top. Fox News, "Gorka on New Mexico compound case 'travesty'," 15 Aug. 2018 Don't pick a too far-flung office or any savings will probably be diminished by all that running around. Dawn Gilbertson, azcentral, "San Diego discounts, deals, money-saving tips," 29 June 2018 That meant, Roberts wrote, that the plaintiff could not pursue a claim that his voting power within his district had been diminished by the current voting map. Adam Liptak, BostonGlobe.com, "Supreme Court sidesteps decision on gerrymandering," 18 June 2018 Justify earned his place alongside the other all-time greats, a group that is never diminished by adding more members. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, "Justify's Triple Crown shouldn't be diminished because of American Pharoah," 9 June 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

9 May 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 How to pronounce diminish (audio) \
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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