pejoration

[pej-uh-rey-shuh n, pee-juh-]
noun
  1. depreciation; a lessening in worth, quality, etc.
  2. 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
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for pejoration

Historical Examples of pejoration


British Dictionary definitions for pejoration

pejoration

noun
  1. 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)
  2. 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

Word Origin and History for pejoration
n.

1650s, noun of action from pejorate (see pejorative).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper