One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Make (someone) immoral or wicked.‘this book would deprave and corrupt young children’
corrupt, lead astray, warp, subvert, pervert, debauch, debase, degrade, make degenerate, defile, sully, pollute, poison, contaminate, infectView synonyms
- ‘He stated that one may lead persons morally astray without depraving and corrupting them.’
- ‘The Legislature can hardly have contemplated that a book which tended to corrupt and deprave the average reader or majority of those likely to read it could be justified as being for the public good on any ground.’
- ‘By contaminating the political culture with persuasive but ruinous ideas, populism depraves all electorally-sensitive governments.’
- ‘He claimed that the book had depraved him, but it transpired that he had only read it because he had been asked to appear as a witness for the prosecution.’
- ‘Pornography is sometimes defined in court as material that tends to deprave and corrupt.’
- ‘But if you asked them ‘well, you've seen it and have you been depraved and corrupted by it?’’
- ‘And they say that these things don't deprave or corrupt.’
- ‘On the contrary, Britain has advanced by leaps and bounds since the days when Lady Chatterley's Lover was banned because it might, in the judge's view, deprave and corrupt one's servants.’
- ‘That's what liberals in the US said, so they formulated policies that were kind and good, and certainly not ones that were designed to corrupt and deprave.’
- ‘How, and why, does pornography that depraves and corrupts unwary children, and exploits women, go untrammeled through the Web?’
- ‘The old phrase in English law defining obscene publications was ‘material likely to deprave and corrupt.’’
- ‘It is not news that we have depraved people among us; nor is it news that they like to taunt society with their combination of relish and indifference.’
- ‘The law, whose stated purpose was to suppress pornography while protecting literature, retained more or less the previous definition of obscenity, as that which, taken as a whole, tended to corrupt and deprave.’
- ‘The colonies absorbed and put into legislative form the common law test of obscenity under which material having a tendency to deprave and corrupt was suppressed.’
- ‘He took an aesthete's view that some of the writing in the issue was ‘indecent in the sense of offending against delicacy’ but ‘would not deprave or corrupt save in point of literary style’.’
- ‘Likewise, the English statute on obscenity specifically refers to material that tends ‘to deprave and corrupt persons who are likely, having regard to all relevant circumstances to read, see or hear the matter’.’
- ‘What tends to deprave or corrupt one person may prove perfectly inoffensive to another.’
- ‘He does, though, manage finally to confess that ‘I don't think I've yet been depraved and corrupted,’ which prompts him to laugh.’
Late Middle English (in the sense ‘pervert the meaning or intention of something’): from Old French depraver or Latin depravare, from de- ‘down, thoroughly’ + pravus ‘crooked, perverse’.
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