When you make something less valuable or less important, you devalue it. You might devalue your car by spray painting it black and letting your dog chew the upholstery.

Economists and business reporters often use the verb devalue when they talk about the currency — or money — of different countries, and what it's worth in comparison to other currencies. Sometimes countries will devalue their currency, for example, to get more people to buy their exported products. But you can also devalue a relationship by neglecting it, or devalue a diamond ring by chipping it. Devaluation came before devalue, with a Latin root of valere, "be strong or be of value."

Definitions of devalue
  1. verb
    lower the value or quality of
    “The tear devalues the painting”
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    lower the value of something
    alloy, debase
    lower in value by increasing the base-metal content
    lour, lower
    set lower
    reduce the value of shareholder stocks by increasing the total number of shares
    expense, write down, write off
    reduce the estimated value of something
    lower the rated electrical capability of electrical apparatus
    subdue, subordinate
    make subordinate, dependent, or subservient
    type of:
    alter, change, modify
    cause to change; make different; cause a transformation
  2. verb
    remove the value from; deprive of its value
    synonyms: devaluate
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    demonetise, demonetize
    deprive of value for payment
    type of:
    cheapen, degrade
    lower the grade of something; reduce its worth
  3. verb
    lose in value
    synonyms: depreciate, devaluate, undervalue
    lower the value of something
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    appreciate, apprise, apprize, revalue
    gain in value
    appreciate, apprise, apprize
    increase the value of
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    type of:
    decrease, diminish, fall, lessen
    decrease in size, extent, or range
Word Family

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