Is there a verb that means to make poor, such as a derivative form of the adjective poor? If not, what would be its best alternative?

  • Give us a sentence in which you would use this word.
    – Jim
    Commented Jun 22, 2015 at 4:22
  • 8
    Perhaps impoverish would be close enough?
    – Jim
    Commented Jun 22, 2015 at 4:34
  • 1
    To make poor ot to become poor.
    – rogermue
    Commented Jun 22, 2015 at 5:11
  • 1
    Please look up a good dictionary that shows the different word forms of poor.
    – Kris
    Commented Jun 22, 2015 at 6:08
  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because OP hasn't explained what meaning he intends for to poor. To make [someone else] poor, become poor [oneself], judge [something to be] poor, etc. Commented Jun 22, 2015 at 14:12

2 Answers 2


You might try

  • impoverish (to make poor; to deprive of strength, richness, or fertility by depleting or draining of something essential),
  • pauperize (to reduce to poverty), or
  • the verb form of beggar (to reduce to poverty or the practice of asking for charity)

all of which mean "to make poor."

Definitions by Merriam-Webster.

  • I like the verbs in this answer, but the definitions ought to be included in it.
    – Anonym
    Commented Jun 24, 2015 at 16:26
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    The definitions are linked to. Just middle-click if you want to open in a new tab. Also see the question for the meaning of the words.
    – WBT
    Commented Jun 24, 2015 at 16:45
  • External web pages are ephemeral; quoting the definitions will aid in the long-term utility of your answer.
    – Anonym
    Commented Jun 25, 2015 at 0:54
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    Agreed with @Anonym: please quote the relevant definitions in your answer, and tell us which dictionary they came from.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Jun 25, 2015 at 14:30
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    Regardless of the discussion on meta, I agree with @Anonym and Dan Bron. Nobody wants to go off to three links to see if your answer is correct or pertinent. A good answer requires the effort to present it so users can see how these words are used and have this pointed out to them. For example impoverish is more common than pauperize (assuming they have the same meaning) and beggar is more extreme than impoverish. Also I don't think "How about?" is the way to phrase an answer. It is better to say that you suggest something, indicate the meaning, and then ask if it is suitable.
    – David
    Commented Sep 24, 2017 at 21:02

What about "to ruin someone"? I think it means exactly the same as "to make someone poor", plus it sounds better. I hope I helped Have a good one 😉

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