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reduce (something) to rubble
To completely destroy something, either literally or figuratively. The tornado reduced whole towns to rubble. Being rejected by that famous director totally reduced my confidence to rubble.
in reduced circumstances
At a much lower level of income or financial means. The one-time business tycoon has now been living in reduced circumstances in a small village in Norway.
reduce (someone) to (something)
To bring someone to a lesser or worse state than they are typically in. Poverty reduced him to homelessness for a brief period of time.
reduce (one) to tears
To cause one to cry. I know it's embarrassing, but sappy movies like that always reduce me to tears.
in reduced circumstances
Euph. in poverty. After Frederick lost his position, we lived in reduced circumstances while waiting for my inheritance.
reduce someone to silence
to cause someone to be silent. The rebuke reduced him to silence—at last. Mary was reduced to silence by Jane's comments.
reduce someone to tears
to cause a person to cry through insults, frustration, and belittling. He scolded her so much that she was reduced to tears by the end of the meeting.
reduce something by something
to diminish something by a certain amount. I have to reduce your allowance by two dollars per week until you pay me back for the broken window. I will reduce the bill by a few dollars.
reduce (something) from (something to something)
to diminish something from one degree to a lower degree. I will reduce the fine from two hundred dollars to one hundred dollars. Mary reduced her demands from a large sum to a smaller one.
reduced to doing something
brought into a certain humble condition or state. The poor man was reduced to begging for food.
in reduced circumstancesused euphemistically to refer to the state of being poor after being relatively wealthy.
reˌduced ˈcircumstancesthe state of being poorer than you were before. People say ‘living in reduced circumstances’ to avoid saying ‘poor’: As time passed, his reduced circumstances became more and more obvious to his friends and colleagues.
1. To decrease something to some level: The drought reduced the stream to a trickle.
2. To bring someone to some humbler, weaker, difficult, or forced state or condition: The illness had reduced them almost to emaciation. The sight of her mother reduced her to tears. The army reduced him from a command post to a desk job.
3. To bring someone to such a humble, weak, or desperate state or condition that he or she does something drastic: The Depression reduced many to begging on the street.
4. To damage or destroy something, leaving it in some lesser state: The blaze reduced the warehouse to ashes.
5. To make something shorter and simpler; summarize something: Their entire business philosophy can be reduced to "The customer is always right."