Definition of depopulate in English:


Syllabification: de·pop·u·late
Pronunciation: /dēˈpäpyəˌlāt


[with object]
  • Substantially reduce the population of (an area): the disease could depopulate a city the size of New Haven
    More example sentences
    • The valleys have not lost their character but agricultural and industrial changes have depopulated some areas and opened others to an influx of lowlanders seeking holiday and retirement homes.
    • For much of the period 1920-1980, large parts of the northern coastal area were effectively depopulated.
    • About 4,000 villages have been burnt and razed to the ground in an attempt to depopulate the area.



Pronunciation: /-ˌpäpyəˈlāSHən/
More example sentences
  • One of the earliest areas to receive the group's attention was Leicestershire, where it was shown that villages were deserted largely because of depopulation caused by the plague.
  • Might I be so bold as to suggest that we change our economic system to a more sustainable one, lead the way in depopulation and shout out loud and clear about how essential it is to leave our children a world worth living in.
  • Unemployment in the former state currently runs at more than 18% - 1.6 million - while some areas are suffering from significant depopulation.


mid 16th century (in the sense 'ravage, lay waste'): from Latin depopulat- 'ravaged', from the verb depopulari, from de- 'completely' + populari 'lay waste' (from populus 'people').

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