- to make poor; reduce to poverty
- to deprive of strength, resources, etc.
Origin of impoverishMiddle English empoverishen ; from extended stem of Old French empovrir ; from em- (; from Classical Latin in-, in) + povre ; from Classical Latin pauper, poor
transitive verbim·pov·er·ished, im·pov·er·ish·ing, im·pov·er·ish·es
- To reduce to poverty; make poor.
- To deprive of richness or strength: impoverish the soil by overuse.
Origin of impoverishMiddle English empoverishen, from Old French empovrir, empovriss- : en-, causative pref.; see en–1 + povre, poor (from Latin pauper; see pauper).
(third-person singular simple present impoverishes, present participle impoverishing, simple past and past participle impoverished)