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[dih-preyv] /dɪˈpreɪv/
verb (used with object), depraved, depraving.
to make morally bad or evil; vitiate; corrupt.
Obsolete. to defame.
Origin of deprave
1325-75; Middle English depraven (< Anglo-French) < Latin dēprāvāre to pervert, corrupt, equivalent to dē- de- + prāv(us) crooked + -āre infinitive suffix
Related forms
[dep-ruh-vey-shuh n] /ˌdɛp rəˈveɪ ʃən/ (Show IPA),
depraver, noun
depravingly, adverb
nondepravation, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for deprave
Historical Examples
  • Crowd bad men and women together, and they corrupt and deprave each other.

    Cast Adrift T. S. Arthur
  • They alter, they force, they deprave the meaning of three or four words, and all is done.

    What Is Free Trade?

    Frdrick Bastiat
  • Success and unquestioned dominion far more often deprave and distort than ennoble and purify the moral nature of man.

    Theodoric the Goth Thomas Hodgkin
  • It is painful to observe the almost inevitable tendency of power to deprave the soul.

    The Empire of Russia

    John S. C. Abbott
  • Power and riches were chiefly to be dreaded on account of their tendency to deprave the possessor.

    Wieland; or The Transformation Charles Brockden Brown
  • Otherwise, the mere growth of wealth, be it ever so widely diffused, will deprave the world instead of elevating it.

    Crime and Its Causes William Douglas Morrison
  • This diathesis is produced by those agencies which deprave the blood and waste vitality.

  • It was not in the power of adulation to turn such a head, or deprave such a heart, as Addison's.

  • No possible amount of good to ever so many can make it right to deprave ever so few; happiness and misery cannot be measured so!

    The Minister's Wooing Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • After having wounded and outraged nearly every feeling of this young creatures nature, they began to deprave her systematically.

    Memoirs of the Empress Catherine II. Catherine II, Empress of Russia
British Dictionary definitions for deprave


verb (transitive)
to make morally bad; corrupt; vitiate
(obsolete) to defame; slander
Derived Forms
depravation (ˌdɛprəˈveɪʃən) noun
depraver, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin dēprāvāre to distort, corrupt, from de- + prāvus crooked
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 deprave

late 14c., "corrupt, lead astray, pervert," from Old French depraver (14c.) or directly from Latin depravare "distort, disfigure;" figuratively "to pervert, seduce, corrupt," from de- "completely" (see de-) + pravus "crooked." Related: Depraved; depraving.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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