- An example of deteriorate is a child's mood going from happy to crying.
- An example of deteriorate is an orange going from ripe to moldy.
Origin of deteriorate; from Late Latin deterioratus, past participle of deteriorare, to make worse ; from Classical Latin deterior, worse, inferior ; from an unverified form deter, below ; from de-, from + -ter, comparative suffix
verbde·te·ri·o·rat·ed, de·te·ri·o·rat·ing, de·te·ri·o·rates
- To grow worse; degenerate: The weather deteriorated overnight.
- To weaken or disintegrate; decay: The nation's highways are deteriorating at a rapid pace.
Origin of deteriorateLate Latin d&emacron;teri&omacron;r&amacron;re, d&emacron;teri&omacron;r&amacron;t-, from Latin d&emacron;terior, worse; see de- in Indo-European roots.