An example of diminish is to downplay the achievement of receiving a law degree from Harvard.
- to make, or make seem, smaller; reduce in size, degree, importance, etc.; lessen
- Archit. to cause to taper
- Music to reduce (a perfect or a minor interval) by a half step
Origin of diminishMiddle English diminishen, a blend of diminuen, to reduce ( from Old French diminuer from Classical Latin diminuere, variant, variety of deminuere from de-, from + minuere, to lessen from minus, small) and minishen, to make smaller from Old French menusier from Vulgar Latin an unverified form minutiare from Classical Latin minutus, minute
- to become smaller or less
- Archit. to taper
verbdi·min·ished, di·min·ish·ing, di·min·ish·es
- a. To make smaller or less; reduce or lessen. See Synonyms at decrease.b. To detract from the authority, reputation, or prestige of: “Her upper-class perfection … somehow diminished me” ( Shirley Abbott )
- To cause to taper.
- Music To reduce (a perfect or minor interval) by a semitone.
- To become smaller or less.
- To taper.
Origin of diminishMiddle English diminishen blend of diminuen to lessen ( from Old French diminuer ) ( from Latin dīminuere ) ( variant of dēminuere ) ( dē- de- ) ( minuere to lessen ) minishen to reduce ( from Old French minuiser ) ( from Vulgar Latin minūtiāre ) ( from Latin minūtia smallness ) ( from minūtus small ) ( from ) ( past participle of minuere ); see mei-2 in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present diminishes, present participle diminishing, simple past and past participle diminished)
From Old French diminuer.