Dictionary: DE-FY'ER – DE-GRAD'ING

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DE-FY'ER, n.

One who defies.

DE-FY'ING, ppr.

Challenging; daring to combat.

DE-GARN'ISH, v.t. [Fr. degarnir; de and garnir, to furnish. See Garnish.]

  1. To unfurnish; to strip of furniture, ornaments, or apparatus.
  2. To deprive of a garrison, or troops necessary for defense; as, to degarnish a city or fort. – Washington's Letter, Nov. 11, 1778.


Stripped of furniture or apparatus; deprived of troops for defense.


Stripping of furniture dress, apparatus, or a garrison.


The act of depriving of furniture, apparatus, or a garrison.

DE-GEN'DER, v.i.

To degenerate. [Not in use.] – Spenser.

DE-GEN'ER-A-CY, n. [See Degenerate, the verb.]

  1. A growing worse or inferior; a decline in good qualities; or a state or being less valuable; as, the degeneracy of a plant.
  2. In morals, decay of virtue; a growing worse; departure from the virtues of ancestors; desertion of that which is good. We speak of the degeneracy of men in modern times, or of the degeneracy of manners, of the age, of virtue, &c., sometimes without reason.
  3. Poorness; meanness; as, a degeneracy of spirit.


  1. Having fallen from a perfect or good state into a less excellent or worse state; having lost something of the good qualities possessed; having declined in natural or moral worth. The degenerate plant of a strange vine. – Jer. ii.
  2. Low; base; mean; corrupt; fallen from primitive or natural excellence; having lost the good qualities of the species. Man is considered a degenerate being. A coward is a man of degenerate spirit.

DE-GEN'ER-ATE, v.i. [L. degenero, from degener, grown worse, ignoble, base; de and gener, genus; Fr. degenerer; Sp. degenerar.]

To become worse; to decay in good qualities; to pass from a good to a bad or worse state; to lose or suffer a diminution of valuable qualities, either in the natural or moral world. In the natural world, plants and animals degenerate when they grow to a less size than usual, or lose a part of the valuable qualities which belong to the species. In the moral world, men degenerate when they decline in virtue, or other good qualities. Manners degenerate when they become corrupt. Wit may degenerate into indecency or impiety.


Grown worse.


In a degenerate or base manner. – Milton.


A degenerate state; a state in which the natural good qualities of the species are decayed or lost.


Decaying in good qualities.


  1. A growing worse, or losing of good qualities; a decline from the virtue and worth of ancestors; a decay of the natural good qualities of the species; a falling from a more excellent state to one of less worth, either in the natural or moral world.
  2. The thing degenerated. – Brown.


  1. Degenerated; fallen from a state of excellence, or from the virtue and merit ancestors. Hence,
  2. Low; base; mean; unworthy; as, a degenerous passion. – Dryden.


In a degenerous manner; basely; meanly.

DE-GLU'TI-NATE, v.t. [L. deglutino; de and glutino, to glue. See Glue.]

To unglue; to loosen or separate substances glued together. – Scott.


Unglued; loosened or separated; as of substances glued together.

DE-GLU-TI'TION, n. [L. deglutio, to swallow; de and glutio. See Glutton.]

  1. The act of swallowing; as, deglutition is difficult.
  2. The power of swallowing; as, deglutition is lost.

DEG-RA-DA'TION, n. [Fr. See Degrade.]

  1. A reducing in rank; the act of depriving one of a degree of honor, of dignity, or of rank; also, deposition; removal or dismission from office; as, the degradation of a peer, of a knight, or of a bishop, in England.
  2. The state of being reduced from an elevated or more honorable station, to one that is low in fact or in estimation; baseness; degeneracy. Deplorable is the degradation of our nature. – South.
  3. Diminution or reduction of strength, efficacy or value.
  4. In painting, a lessening and obscuring of the appearance of distant objects in a landscape, that they may appear as they would do to an eye placed at a distance. – Johnson. Encyc.
  5. Diminution; reduction of altitude or magnitude. – Journ. of Science.

DE-GRADE', v.t. [Fr. degrader; Sp. and Port. degradar; It. degradare; L. de and gradus, a step, a degree. See Grade.]

  1. To reduce from a higher to a lower rank or degree; to deprive one of any office or dignity, by which he loses rank in society; to strip of honors; as, to degrade a nobleman, an archbishop, or a general officer.
  2. To reduce in estimation; to lessen the value of; to lower; to sink. Vice degrades a man in the view of others; often in his own view. Drunkenness degrades a man to the level of a beast.
  3. To reduce in altitude or magnitude, as hills and mountains. Although the ridge is still there, the ridge itself has been degraded. – Journ. of Science.


Reduced in rank; deprived of an office or dignity; lowered; sunk; reduced in estimation or value.


Deprivation of rank or office. – Milton.


  1. Reducing in rank; depriving of honors or offices; reducing in value, estimation, or altitude.
  2. adj. Dishonoring; disgracing the character; as, degrading obsequiousness. The inordinate love of money and of fame, are base and degrading passions. – Wirt.