- to make or become worse or inferior in character, quality, value, etc.
- to disintegrate or wear away.
Origin of deteriorate
SynonymsSee more synonyms for deteriorate on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for deteriorate
At the same time, the Easter Elchies House began to deteriorate.Ester Elchies, The Estate Built By Whiskey
December 10, 2014
Yet, in pursuit of that ‘great revival of art,’ his anxiety, depression, and overall health began to deteriorate.Decoding Vincent Van Gogh’s Tempestuous, Fragile Mind
December 7, 2014
As he got older, the two stopped going to the park, and their relationship began to deteriorate.‘Escape From Tomorrow’: Making Disney’s Worst Nightmare
October 9, 2013
This includes the ongoing and intensifying insurgency by "Jihadist" militants in Sinai, which continues to deteriorate.Hamas in the Crosshairs
July 26, 2013
But if the situation continues to deteriorate, that could start to change quickly.Hamas-Egypt Tensions Take Toll On Gaza
July 25, 2013
In contact with the white man the Indian tended to deteriorate.The Fathers of New England
Charles M. Andrews
The result is that it is all far from good and likely to deteriorate rather than to improve.Rural Hygiene
Henry N. Ogden
The rations appeared to deteriorate and diminish as the winter advanced.Lights and Shadows in Confederate Prisons
Homer B. Sprague
There is no doubt that she caused Leonora's character to deteriorate.The Good Soldier
Ford Madox Ford
These soups do not deteriorate, so may be continually on hand and thus found most convenient.American Cookery
- to make or become worse or lower in quality, value, character, etc; depreciate
- (intr) to wear away or disintegrate
Word Origin and History for deteriorate
1640s (as a past participle adjective, 1570s), from Late Latin deterioratus, past participle of deteriorare "get worse, make worse," from Latin deterior "worse, lower, inferior, meaner," contrastive of *deter "bad, lower," from PIE *de-tero-, from demonstrative stem *de- (see de). Originally transitive in English; intransitive sense is from 1758. Related: Deteriorated; deteriorating.
- To grow worse in function or condition.
- To weaken or disintegrate.