English edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English wursnen; equivalent to worse +‎ -en.

Pronunciation edit

Verb edit

worsen (third-person singular simple present worsens, present participle worsening, simple past and past participle worsened)

  1. (transitive) To make worse; to impair.
    The global warming has worsened the weather.
    • 1829, Robert Southey, “(please specify the page)”, in Sir Thomas More: or, Colloquies on the Progress and Prospects of Society. [], volumes (please specify |volume=I or II), London: John Murray, [], →OCLC:
      It is apparent that, in the particular point of which we have been conversing, their condition is greatly worsened.
  2. (intransitive) To become worse; to get worse.
    The weather has worsened.
    • 1961 January, “Talking of Trains: Flooding at Lewes”, in Trains Illustrated, page 5:
      During the day conditions worsened quickly—for example, a 2-6-0 on the Uckfield line suddenly encountered flood water high enough to enter its ashpan and extinguish its fire—until lock gates up-river at Barcombe gave way and a tidal wave rolled down the valley meeting head-on a spring tide rolling up from the coast.
    • 2023 April 5, Mel Holley, “Network News: TPE faces uncertain future after high cancellation rate”, in RAIL, number 980, page 8:
      TPE's cancellation score worsened from 7.2% to 23.8% when adjusted to include pre-cancellations (P*-coded) owing to a shortage of train crew.
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To get the better of; to worst.

Synonyms edit

Antonyms edit

Translations edit

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