(?), n. [LL. degradatio, from degradare: cf. F. dgradation. 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.
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He saw many removes and degradations in all the other offices of which he had been possessed.
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2. The state of being reduced in rank, character, or reputation; baseness; moral, physical, or intellectual degeneracy; disgrace; abasement; debasement.
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The . . . degradation of a needy man of letters.
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Deplorable is the degradation of our nature.
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Moments there frequently must be, when a sinner is sensible of the degradation of his state.
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3. Diminution or reduction of strength, efficacy, or value; degeneration; deterioration.
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The development and degradation of the alphabetic forms can be traced.
I. Taylor (The Alphabet).
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4. (Geol.) A gradual wearing down or wasting, as of rocks and banks, by the action of water, frost etc.
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5. (Biol.) The state or condition of a species or group which exhibits degraded forms; degeneration.
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The degradation of the species man is observed in some of its varieties.
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6. (Physiol.) Arrest of development, or degeneration of any organ, or of the body as a whole.
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Degradation of energy, or 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.
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Fri 26th November 2021