Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
- (idiomatic) To make or attempt to make something seem less important, likely, or obvious.
- The essay attempts to play down the role slavery had in the Civil War.
- The senator played down the threat of a recession.
- During the wave of anti-immigrant sentiment, Miguel played down his immigrant status by removing Chicano patois from his speech and adopting the nickname "Mike."
- (make to seem less important): play up
make something seem less important