- having sunk below a former or normal condition, character, etc.; deteriorated
- morally corrupt; depraved
Origin of degenerateClassical Latin degeneratus, past participle of degenerare, to become unlike one's race, degenerate from degener, not genuine, base from de-, from + genus, race: see genus
intransitive verb-·at·ed, -·at·ing
- to lose former normal or higher qualities
- to decline or become debased morally, culturally, etc.
- Biol. to undergo degeneration; deteriorate