Definition of degenerate verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



verbVerb Forms present simple I / you / we / they degenerate
BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪt//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪt//
he / she / it degenerates
BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪts//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪts//
past simple degenerated
BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪd//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪd//
past participle degenerated
BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪd//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪd//
-ing form degenerating
BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪŋ//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪtɪŋ//
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BrE BrE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪt//
; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈdʒenəreɪt//
[intransitive] to become worse, for example by becoming lower in quality or weaker synonym deteriorate Her health degenerated quickly. degenerate into something The march degenerated into a riot.
Word Originlate 15th cent.: from Latin degeneratus ‘no longer of its kind’, from the verb degenerare, from degener ‘debased’, from de- ‘away from’ + genus, gener- ‘race, kind’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: degenerate

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