De·grade v. t. [imp. & p. p. Degraded; p. pr. & vb. n. Degrading.]
1. To reduce from a higher to a lower rank or degree; to lower in rank; to deprive of office or dignity; to strip of honors; as, to degrade a nobleman, or a general officer.
Prynne was sentenced by the Star Chamber Court to be degraded from the bar. --Palfrey.
2. To reduce in estimation, character, or reputation; to lessen the value of; to lower the physical, moral, or intellectual character of; to debase; to bring shame or contempt upon; to disgrace; as, vice degrades a man.
O miserable mankind, to what fall
Degraded, to what wretched state reserved! --Milton.
Yet time ennobles or degrades each line. --Pope.
Her pride . . . struggled hard against this degrading passion. --Macaulay.
3. Geol. To reduce in altitude or magnitude, as hills and mountains; to wear down.
Syn: -- To abase; demean; lower; reduce. See Abase.
1. Reduced in rank, character, or reputation; debased; sunken; low; base.
The Netherlands . . . were reduced practically to a very degraded condition. --Motley.
2. Biol. Having the typical characters or organs in a partially developed condition, or lacking certain parts.
Some families of plants are degraded dicotyledons. --Dana.
3. Her. Having steps; -- said of a cross each of whose extremities finishes in steps growing larger as they leave the center; -- termed also on degrees.
adj 1: unrestrained by convention or morality; "Congreve draws a
debauched aristocratic society"; "deplorably
dissipated and degraded"; "riotous living"; "fast
women" [syn: debauched, degenerate, dissipated,
dissolute, libertine, profligate, riotous, fast]
2: lowered in value; "the dollar is low"; "a debased currency"
[syn: debased, devalued]