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cheapen

[chee-puh n] /ˈtʃi pən/
verb (used with object)
1.
to make cheap or cheaper.
2.
to lower in esteem; bring into contempt:
Constant swearing cheapened him.
3.
to decrease the quality or beauty of; make inferior or vulgar:
She cheapened the dress by adding a fringe to it.
4.
Archaic. to bargain for.
verb (used without object)
5.
to become cheap or cheaper.
Origin of cheapen
obsolete English
1555-1565
1555-65; cheap + -en1; replacing Middle English chepen (> obsolete English cheap (v.)) to price, bargain, Old English cēapian to bargain, trade, buy; cognate with Old Norse kaupa, Gothic kaupōn, German kaufen
Related forms
cheapener, noun
uncheapened, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for cheapen
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He loved with single heart and refused to cheapen himself or his love.

    White Fang Jack London
  • To quote or to individualize would be to cheapen this vast offering.

  • He was never known to bargain for a book or to endeavour to cheapen it.

    The Book-Hunter in London William Roberts
  • At "cheapen the cost" his big ears twitched as if they had been tickled.

    The Plum Tree David Graham Phillips
  • It wont do to cheapen your work by putting a small price on it.

  • It is the market of young lecturers, whom you may cheapen here at all rates and sizes.

    Microcosmography John Earle
  • Her Uncle Tom and Winifred seemed to jeer at her, to cheapen her.

    The Rainbow D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence
  • They cheapen, he complained, by their imports sassafras from its proper price of 20s.

    Sir Walter Ralegh William Stebbing
British Dictionary definitions for cheapen

cheapen

/ˈtʃiːpən/
verb
1.
to make or become lower in reputation, quality, etc; degrade or be degraded
2.
to make or become cheap or cheaper
Derived Forms
cheapener, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cheapen
v.

1570s, "ask the price of," from cheap (adj.) + -en (1). Meaning "lower the price of" is from 1833, but figuratively, "to lower in estimation" is from 1650s. Related: Cheapened; cheapening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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