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verb (used with object), gen·tri·fied, gen·tri·fy·ing.
  1. to alter (a deteriorated urban neighborhood) through the buying and renovation of houses and stores by upper- or middle-income families or individuals, raising property values but often displacing low-income families and small businesses.
  2. to conform to an upper- or middle-class lifestyle; make appealing to those with more affluent tastes: Fish and chips have been gentrified.
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verb (used without object), gen·tri·fied, gen·tri·fy·ing.
  1. to undergo this type of change: Some neighborhoods gentrify more quickly than others.
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Origin of gentrify

First recorded in 1970–75; gentry + -fy
Related formsgen·tri·fi·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Word Origin and History for gentrify


"renovate inner-city housing to middle-class standards," by 1972, from gentry + -fy. Related: Gentrified, which was used from early 19c. of persons.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper