Deg`ra*da"tion (?), n. [LL. degradatio, from degradare: cf. F. d'egradation. See Degrade.]

1.

The act of reducing in rank, character, or reputation, or of abasing; a lowering from one's standing or rank in office or society; diminution; as, the degradation of a peer, a knight, a general, or a bishop.

He saw many removes and degradations in all the other offices of which he had been possessed. Clarendon.

2.

The state of being reduced in rank, character, or reputation; baseness; moral, physical, or intellectual degeneracy; disgrace; abasement; debasement.

The . . . degradation of a needy man of letters. Macaulay.

Deplorable is the degradation of our nature. South.

Moments there frequently must be, when a sier is sensible of the degradation of his state. Blair.

3.

Diminution or reduction of strength, efficacy, or value; degeneration; deterioration.

The development and degradation of the alphabetic forms can be traced. I. Taylor (The Alphabet).

4. Geol.

A gradual wearing down or wasting, as of rocks and banks, by the action of water, fro etc.

5. Biol.

The state or condition of a species or group which exhibits degraded forms; degeneration.

The degradation of the species man is observed in some of its varieties. Dana.

6. Physiol.

Arrest of development, or degeneration of any organ, or of the body as a whole.

Degradation of energy, ∨ Dissipation of energy Physics, the transformation of energy into some form in which it is less available for doing work.

Syn. -- Abasement; debasement; reduction; decline.

 

© Webster 1913.

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