[uhn-der-mahyn or especially for 1, 2, 4, uhn-der-mahyn]
- to injure or destroy by insidious activity or imperceptible stages, sometimes tending toward a sudden dramatic effect.
- to attack by indirect, secret, or underhand means; attempt to subvert by stealth.
- to make an excavation under; dig or tunnel beneath, as a military stronghold.
- to weaken or cause to collapse by removing underlying support, as by digging away or eroding the foundation.
Origin of undermine
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for undermined
The safety of American personnel at the American consulate in Libya was undermined by a “stand down order.”Congress Debunks Congress’s Nuttiest Benghazi Theories
November 26, 2014
Ford, now with the Middle East Institute, says that in some ways the strikes have “undermined the moderates.”Is Obama Done Playing Footsie With Assad?
November 17, 2014
There are any number of examples of nations at war not allowing themselves to be undermined by journalists.Napoleon Was a Dynamite Dictator
November 7, 2014
Blood Sport is filled with big conclusions that are undermined by the known facts.In Defense of A-Roid
September 5, 2014
In so doing, it declined to address a fundamental problem that has undermined American public education ever since.How a 1973 Supreme Court Decision Has Contributed to Our Inequality
Geoffrey R. Stone
May 15, 2014
She admitted the strength of his position, though it undermined imagination.Howards End
E. M. Forster
The humiliation of his business failure had undermined his health.Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete
Albert Bigelow Paine
Half an hour after they had gone the undermined angle came down.A Pair of Blue Eyes
Such mock-modesty would at once have undermined her arguments.Mary Wollstonecraft
Elizabeth Robins Pennell
Thus, the sand will be undermined by the waves, and this will cause the block to fall into the sea.Ten Books on Architecture
- (of the sea, wind, etc) to wear away the bottom or base of (land, cliffs, etc)
- to weaken gradually or insidiouslytheir insults undermined her confidence
- to tunnel or dig beneath
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 undermined
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper