Synonyms & Antonyms of deplete

1 to make complete use of
  • miners depleted the vein of copper ore after only a few months

Synonyms for deplete

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Antonyms for deplete

2 to make smaller in amount, volume, or extent
  • disease and battlefield casualties had depleted troop strength to dangerously low levels

Synonyms for deplete

Words Related to deplete

Near Antonyms for deplete

Antonyms for deplete

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Frequently Asked Questions About deplete

How is the word deplete distinct from other similar verbs?

Some common synonyms of deplete are bankrupt, drain, exhaust, and impoverish. While all these words 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

When is bankrupt a more appropriate choice than deplete?

Although the words bankrupt and deplete have much in common, bankrupt suggests impoverishment to the point of imminent collapse.

war had bankrupted the nation of resources

When is it sensible to use drain instead of deplete?

The synonyms drain and deplete are sometimes interchangeable, but drain implies a gradual withdrawal and ultimate deprivation of what is necessary to an existence.

personal tragedy had drained him of all spirit

When can exhaust be used instead of deplete?

In some situations, the words exhaust and deplete are roughly equivalent. However, exhaust stresses a complete emptying.

her lecture exhausted the subject

In what contexts can impoverish take the place of deplete?

While in some cases nearly identical to deplete, impoverish suggests a deprivation of something essential to richness or productiveness.

impoverished soil

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Time Traveler for deplete

Time Traveler

The first known use of deplete was in 1807

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Cite this Entry

“Deplete.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on deplete

Nglish: Translation of deplete for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deplete for Arabic Speakers


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