Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
- (archaic) An improvement, betterment or amelioration
1860, True Worthy Hoit, The Right of American Slavery:
- It would seem that the rise and progress of this Republic; the spread of our ocean commerce; the building of a thousand cities; the rush of the world to our shores; the peopling of our boundless plains; the rapid birth of new States into our Union; the triumph of our arms; our repeated accessions of territory; our maritime and commercial superiority; our foreign discoveries; our inventions in mechanism; our discoveries in science; the use of steam, and electricity; our statesmanship, and foreign diplomacy; a thousand miraculous incidents of individual enterprise and success; the discovery of gold, of silver, and iron; our internal improvements and meliorations; our national prestige; and finally, our greatness and glory as a nation,--ought to suffice for any reasonable conception of the marvellous, as they outstrip the more ignoble creations of fancy, and absolutely invade the former domain of fiction and romance.
- (linguistics) The process in which a term gains a more positive connotation over time