- to reduce to a lower grade, rank, class, or position (opposed to promote): They demoted the careless waiter to busboy.
Origin of demote
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for demotion
Moving to Hulu like Larry King could give him free rein—but is that too much of a demotion from venerable Tonight?Where Does Jay Leno Go Next?
April 3, 2013
He just felt that he was reasonably secure against promotion, and that he need not be afraid of "demotion."John Wesley, Jr.
Dan B. Brummitt
- (tr) to lower in rank or position; relegate
C19: from de- + (pro) mote
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
Word Origin and History for demotion
1901, agent noun from demote (v.).
Regarding an antithesis to 'promote,' the word universally in use in Cambridge, in Harvard College, is drop. The same word is in use in the leading schools here (Boston). I hope I may be counted every time against such barbarisms as 'demote' and 'retromote.' [Edward Everett Hale, 1892, letter to the publishers of "Funk & Wagnalls' Standard Dictionary"]
Related: Demoted; demoting.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper