Debase De*base", v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Debased}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Debasing}.] [Pref. de- + base. See {Base}, a., and cf. {Abase}.] To reduce from a higher to a lower state or grade of worth, dignity, purity, station, etc.; to degrade; to lower; to deteriorate; to abase; as, to debase the character by crime; to debase the mind by frivolity; to debase style by vulgar words. [1913 Webster]

The coin which was adulterated and debased. --Hale. [1913 Webster]

It is a kind of taking God's name in vain to debase religion with such frivolous disputes. --Hooker. [1913 Webster]

And to debase the sons, exalts the sires. --Pope.

Syn: To abase; degrade. See {Abase}. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • debase — 1 Debase, vitiate, deprave, corrupt, debauch, pervert mean to cause a person or thing to become impaired and lowered in quality or character and share certain distinctions in implications and connotations with the adjectives (usually participial… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • debase — [v1] degrade, shame abase, bemean, cast down, cheapen, corrupt, cripple, debauch, debilitate, demean, demoralize, deprave, devaluate, devalue, disable, disgrace, dishonor, drag down*, dump on*, enfeeble, fluff off*, humble, humiliate, lower, put… …   New thesaurus

  • debase — [dē bās′, dibās′] vt. debased, debasing [ DE + base, aphetic < ABASE] to make lower in value, quality, character, dignity, etc.; cheapen SYN. DEGRADE debasement n. debaser n. SYN. DEBASE implies generally a lowering in quality, value, dignity …   English World dictionary

  • debase — I verb abase, adulterate, bastardize, befoul, cheapen, coarsen, contaminate, corrumpere, corrupt, debauch, defile, degrade, dehumanize, demoralize, deprave, depreciate, depress, desecrate, deteriorate, discredit, disgrace, dishonor, downgrade,… …   Law dictionary

  • debase — (v.) 1560s, from DE (Cf. de ) down + BASE (Cf. base) (adj.) low, on analogy of abase (or, alternatively, from obsolete verb base to abuse ) …   Etymology dictionary

  • debase — ► VERB ▪ lower the quality, value, or character of. DERIVATIVES debasement noun …   English terms dictionary

  • debase — UK [dɪˈbeɪs] / US verb [transitive] Word forms debase : present tense I/you/we/they debase he/she/it debases present participle debasing past tense debased past participle debased formal to reduce the value, quality, or status of something •… …   English dictionary

  • debase — transitive verb Date: 1565 1. to lower in status, esteem, quality, or character 2. a. to reduce the intrinsic value of (a coin) by increasing the base metal content b. to reduce the exchange value of (a monetary unit) • debasement noun …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • debase — de|base [dıˈbeıs] v [T] formal to make someone or something lose its value or people s respect ▪ The medical profession has been debased by these revelations. debase yourself ▪ actors who debased themselves by participating in the show debase a… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • debase — verb (T) 1 informal to reduce the quality or value of something: a once rational society debased by war and corruption 2 debase yourself to do something that makes other people have less respect for you: women forced to debase themselves by… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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