[pej-uh-rey-shuh n, pee-juh-]
depreciation; a lessening in worth, quality, etc.
Historical Linguistics. semantic change in a word to a lower, less approved, or less respectable meaning.Compare melioration(def 1).
Origin of pejoration
1650–60; < Medieval Latin pējōrātiōn- (stem of pējōrātiō) a making worse, equivalent to Late Latin pējōrāt(us) (past participle of pējōrāre to make worse, derivative of pējor worse) + -iōn- -ion
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Examples from the Web for pejoration
Historical Examples of pejoration
I hope that these baths may arrest the disagreeable tendency to pejoration from which I have suffered in the past year.The Letters of William James, Vol. II
linguistics semantic change whereby a word acquires unfavourable connotationsthe English word ``silly'' changed its meaning from ``holy'' or ``happy'' by pejoration Compare amelioration (def. 3)
the process of worsening; deterioration
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
1650s, noun of action from pejorate (see pejorative).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper