definitions
  • synonyms

demean

1
[ dih-meen ]
/ dɪˈmin /
||
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verb (used with object)

to lower in dignity, honor, or standing; debase: He demeaned himself by accepting the bribe.

RELATED WORDS

despise, disparage, debase, degrade, belittle, derogate, lower, contemn, stoop, decry, sink, detract, scorn, abase, pan, descend, bad-mouth, bemean, dis, poor-mouth

Nearby words

demassify, dematerialize, dematiaceous, demavend, deme, demean, demeaning, demeanor, demeanour, demeclocycline, dement

Origin of demean

1
1595–1605; de- + mean2, modeled on debase
SYNONYMS FOR demean

Definition for demean (2 of 2)

demean

2
[ dih-meen ]
/ dɪˈmin /

verb (used with object)

to conduct or behave (oneself) in a specified manner.

noun

Archaic. demeanor.

Origin of demean

2
1250–1300; Middle English deme(i)nen < Anglo-French, Old French demener, equivalent to de- de- + mener to lead, conduct < Latin mināre to drive, minārī to threaten
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for demean

British Dictionary definitions for demean (1 of 2)

demean

1
/ (dɪˈmiːn) /

verb

(tr) to lower (oneself) in dignity, status, or character; humble; debase

Word Origin for demean

C17: see de-, mean ²; on the model of debase

British Dictionary definitions for demean (2 of 2)

demean

2
/ (dɪˈmiːn) /

verb

(tr) rare to behave or conduct (oneself) in a specified way

Word Origin for demean

C13: from Old French demener, from de- + mener to lead, drive, from Latin mināre to drive (animals), from minārī to use threats
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 demean

demean


v.

"lower in dignity," c.1600, perhaps from de- "down" + mean (adj.) and modeled on debase. Indistinguishable in some uses from obsolete demean (see demeanor) which influenced it and may be its true source. Related: Demeaned; demeaning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper