Definitions for degeneratedɪˈdʒɛn əˌreɪt; -ər ɪt

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word degenerate

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

de•gen•er•atedɪˈdʒɛn əˌreɪt; -ər ɪt(v.; adj., n.; adj.; n.)-at•ed, -at•ing

  1. (v.i.)to decline in physical, mental, or moral qualities; deteriorate.

  2. to diminish in quality; fall from a high or normal standard:

    The debate degenerated into a brawl.

  3. (of an organ or tissue) to lose structure or function.

    Category: Pathology

  4. (of a species or any of its traits or structures) to lose function or structural organization in the course of evolution, as the vestigial wings of a flightless bird.

    Category: Biology, Evolution

  5. (adj.)having declined in physical or moral qualities; deteriorated; degraded.

  6. having lost the qualities proper to the race or kind:

    a degenerate vine.

  7. characterized by or associated with degeneracy.

  8. Physics. (of modes of vibration of a system) having the same frequency. (of quantum states of a system) having equal energy.

    Category: Physics

  9. (n.)a person who has declined, esp. in morals, from a type considered standard.

  10. a person or thing that reverts to an earlier stage of culture, development, or evolution.

    Category: Common Vocabulary

  11. a sexual deviate.

Origin of degenerate:

1485–95; < L dēgenerātus, ptp. of dēgenerāre to decline from an ancestral standard; see generate


Princeton's WordNet

  1. pervert, deviant, deviate, degenerate(adj)

    a person whose behavior deviates from what is acceptable especially in sexual behavior

  2. debauched, degenerate, degraded, dissipated, dissolute, libertine, profligate, riotous, fast(verb)

    unrestrained by convention or morality

    "Congreve draws a debauched aristocratic society"; "deplorably dissipated and degraded"; "riotous living"; "fast women"

  3. devolve, deteriorate, drop, degenerate(verb)

    grow worse

    "Her condition deteriorated"; "Conditions in the slums degenerated"; "The discussion devolved into a shouting match"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. degenerate(verb)ɪˈdʒɛn əˌreɪt; adj., n. -ər ɪt

    to worsen in quality

    a situation that could degenerate into civil war; the degeneration of his health


  1. degenerate(Noun)

    One is degenerate, who has fallen from previous stature.

    You are a degenerate, boy. You're a disgrace to your ancestors.

  2. degenerate(Verb)

    (of humans or systems) to lose good or desirable qualities;

    His condition continued to degenerate even after admission to hospital.

  3. degenerate(Adjective)

    (of qualities) having deteriorated, degraded or fallen from normal, coherent, balanced and desirable to an undesirable and typically abnormal

  4. degenerate(Adjective)

    (of a human or system) having lost good or desirable qualities

  5. degenerate(Adjective)

    (of an encoding or function) having multiple domain elements correspond to one element of the range

    The genetic code is degenerate because a single amino acid can be coded by one of several codons.

  6. degenerate(Adjective)

    a degenerate case is a limiting case in which a class of object changes its nature so as to belong to another, usually simpler, class.

  7. degenerate(Adjective)

    Having the same quantum energy level

  8. Origin: From degeneratus, past participle of degenerare, from degener, from de + genus; see genus, general.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Degenerate(adj)

    having become worse than one's kind, or one's former state; having declined in worth; having lost in goodness; deteriorated; degraded; unworthy; base; low

  2. Degenerate(verb)

    to be or grow worse than one's kind, or than one was originally; hence, to be inferior; to grow poorer, meaner, or more vicious; to decline in good qualities; to deteriorate

  3. Degenerate(verb)

    to fall off from the normal quality or the healthy structure of its kind; to become of a lower type

Translations for degenerate

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


having become immoral or inferior

the degenerate son of well-respected parents.

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