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undermining

[ uhn-der-mahy-ning ]
/ ˈʌn dərˌmaɪ nɪŋ /
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noun
the act or process of injuring, attacking, or destroying something or someone indirectly or by imperceptible degrees, often leading to a dramatic collapse: The undermining of Scottish Gaelic as a viable language resulted not from decrees, but from a gradual weakening of independent Scottish institutions.
the act or process of weakening something or causing it to collapse by removing its underlying support, as by erosion: During the heavy rains, blocked sewers caused the flooding of the basement and the undermining of the wall by water.
the act of digging or tunneling underneath something, as a military stronghold: The siege works were now close enough to allow the undermining of some of the bastions of the fortress.
adjective
weakening something or someone gradually or indirectly: Seating students in rows, so they cannot see each other’s faces, has an undermining effect on their engagement.
digging or tunneling underneath something, or removing or eroding its underlying support: The land along the shoreline collapsed because of undermining waves and currents.
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Origin of undermining

undermin(e) + -ing1 for the noun senses; undermin(e) + -ing2 for the adjective senses

OTHER WORDS FROM undermining

un·der·min·ing·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use undermining in a sentence

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