derogate • \DAIR-uh-gayt\ • verb
1 : to cause to seem inferior : disparage 2 : to take away a part so as to impair : detract 3 : to act beneath one’s position or character
It is easy to derogate the prom committee for its lackluster theme now, but nobody came forward with any better ideas while it was being discussed.
“In two national elections, American voters definitively entrusted that man with the job. That man represents the presidency…. Politicians who publicly disrespect the man who holds that office derogate their own profession.” — Laura Washington, Chicago Sun-Times, June 23, 2014
Did you know?
You’re probably familiar with derogatory, the adjective meaning “expressing a low opinion,” but you may not be as well-acquainted with the less common verb, derogate. Both words can be traced back to the Late Latin wordderogatus, which is the past participle of the verbderogare, meaning “to detract” or “to annul (a law).”Derogare, in turn, derives from the Latin word for “ask,”rogare. Derogate first appeared in English in the 15th century. Derogatory was adopted in the early 16th century, and has become much more popular than the verb. Other derogate relatives include derogative,derogation, and derogatorily.