- to reduce to poverty: a country impoverished by war.
- to make poor in quality, productiveness, etc.; exhaust the strength or richness of: Bad farming practices impoverished the soil.
Origin of impoverish
SynonymsSee more synonyms for impoverish on Thesaurus.com
2. deplete, drain; weaken, enervate, fatigue, cripple.
1, 2. enrich.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for impoverishment
In the Gaza Strip, the degree of impoverishment and human suffering is dispiriting.Old Problems and New Realities
November 22, 2012
It results in impoverishment and distortion and subsequent deficiency.Fantasia of the Unconscious
D. H. Lawrence
Our very success has in one aspect tended to their impoverishment.Life and Work in Benares and Kumaon, 1839-1877
And what had been the impoverishment of her soul under this grim discipline?Robert Orange
John Oliver Hobbes
The tax-taker was the authority for the wretched creature's impoverishment.The Letters of Charles Dickens
The smallness of the tribute proves the impoverishment of the land.The Expositor's Bible
F. W. Farrar
- to make poor or diminish the quality ofto impoverish society by cutting the grant to the arts
- to deprive (soil, etc) of fertility
C15: from Old French empovrir, from povre poor
Word Origin and History for impoverishment
early 15c., empoverischen, from Old French empoveriss-, stem of empoverir, from em- + povre "poor" (see poor). Related: Impoverished; impoverishing.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper