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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Debase


DEBA'SE, verb transitive

1. To reduce from a higher to a lower state or rank, in estimation.

The drunkard debases himself and his character.

Intemperance and debauchery debase men almost to a level with beasts.

2. To reduce or lower in quality, purity, or value; to adulterate; as, to debase gold or silver by alloy.

3. To lower or degrade; to make mean or despicable. Religion should not be debased by frivolous disputes. Vicious habits debase the mind, as well as the character.

4. To sink in purity or elegance; to vitiate by meanness; as, to debase style by the use of vulgar words.