De*mean" (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Demeaned (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Demeaning.] [OF. demener to conduct, guide, manage, F. se d'emener to struggle pref. d'e- (L. de) + mener to lead, drive, carry on, conduct, fr. L. minare to drive animals by threatening cries, fr. minari to threaten. See Menace.]

1.

To manage; to conduct; to treat.

[Our] clergy have with violence demeaned the matter. Milton.

2.

To conduct; to behave; to comport; -- followed by the reflexive pronoun.

They have demeaned themselves Like men born to renown by life or death. Shak.

They answered . . . that they should demean themselves according to their instructions. Clarendon.

3.

To debase; to lower; to degrade; -- followed by the reflexive pronoun.

Her son would demean himself by a marriage with an artist's daughter. Thackeray.

⇒ This sense is probably due to a false etymology which regarded the word as connected with the adjective mean.

 

© Webster 1913.


De*mean" (?), n. [OF. demene. See Demean, v. t.]

1.

Management; treatment.

[Obs.]

Vile demean and usage bad. Spenser.

2.

Behavior; conduct; bearing; demeanor.

[Obs.]

With grave demean and solemn vanity. West.

 

© Webster 1913.


De*mean", n. [See Demesne.]

1.

Demesne.

[Obs.]

2. pl.

Resources; means.

[Obs.]

You know How narrow our demeans are. Massinger.

 

© Webster 1913.

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