decline

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
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See also: decliné, décline, and décliné

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English declinen, borrowed from Old French decliner, from Latin declinare (to bend, turn aside, deflect, inflect, decline), from de (down) + clīnō (I bend, I incline), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱley- (English lean).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /dɪˈklaɪn/
  • Hyphenation: de‧cline
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -aɪn

Noun[edit]

decline (countable and uncountable, plural declines)

  1. Downward movement, fall.(Can we add an example for this sense?)
  2. A sloping downward, e.g. of a hill or road.(Can we add an example for this sense?)
  3. A weakening.(Can we add an example for this sense?)
    • 2012 January 1, Philip E. Mirowski, “Harms to Health from the Pursuit of Profits”, in American Scientist[1], volume 100, number 1, page 87:
      In an era when political leaders promise deliverance from decline through America’s purported preeminence in scientific research, the news that science is in deep trouble in the United States has been as unwelcome as a diagnosis of leukemia following the loss of health insurance.
  4. A reduction or diminution of activity.
    • 1992, Rudolf M[athias] Schuster, The Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America: East of the Hundredth Meridian, volume V, New York, N.Y.: Columbia University Press, →ISBN, page ix:
      It is also pertinent to note that the current obvious decline in work on holarctic hepatics most surely reflects a current obsession with cataloging and with nomenclature of the organisms—as divorced from their study as living entities.
  5. The act of declining or refusing something.
    • 2004, David A. Montague, Fraud Prevention Techniques for Credit Card Fraud
      The issuing bank only checks the consumer's credit card number for authorization. [] Soft declines are those declines in which the bank requires further verification.

Antonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Verb[edit]

decline (third-person singular simple present declines, present participle declining, simple past and past participle declined)

  1. (intransitive) To move downwards, to fall, to drop.
    The dollar has declined rapidly since 2001.
  2. (intransitive) To become weaker or worse.
    My health declined in winter.
  3. (transitive) To bend downward; to bring down; to depress; to cause to bend, or fall.
    • (Can we date this quote by Thomson and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      in melancholy deep, with head declined
    • (Can we date this quote by Spenser and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      And now fair Phoebus gan decline in haste / His weary wagon to the western vale.
  4. (transitive) To cause to decrease or diminish.
    • (Can we date this quote by Beaumont and Fletcher and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      You have declined his means.
    • (Can we date this quote by Burton and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      He knoweth his error, but will not seek to decline it.
  5. To turn or bend aside; to deviate; to stray; to withdraw.
    a line that declines from straightness
    conduct that declines from sound morals
    • Bible, Psalms cxix. 157
      Yet do I not decline from thy testimonies.
  6. (transitive) To refuse, forbear.
    • (Can we date this quote by Massinger and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      Could I decline this dreadful hour?
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, chapter 7, in The Mirror and the Lamp:
      “[…] This is Mr. Churchill, who, as you are aware, is good enough to come to us for his diaconate, and, as we hope, for much longer; and being a gentleman of independent means, he declines to take any payment.” Saying this Walden rubbed his hands together and smiled contentedly.
    On reflection I think I will decline your generous offer.
  7. (transitive, grammar, usually of substantives, adjectives and pronouns) To inflect for case, number and sometimes gender.
    • (Can we date this quote by Ascham and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      after the first declining of a noun and a verb
  8. (by extension) To run through from first to last; to repeat like a schoolboy declining a noun.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
  9. (American football, Canadian football) To reject a penalty against the opposing team, usually because the result of accepting it would benefit the non-penalized team less than the preceding play.
    The team chose to decline the fifteen-yard penalty because their receiver had caught the ball for a thirty-yard gain.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Portuguese[edit]

Verb[edit]

decline

  1. first-person singular (eu) present subjunctive of declinar
  2. third-person singular (ele and ela, also used with você and others) present subjunctive of declinar
  3. third-person singular (você) affirmative imperative of declinar
  4. third-person singular (você) negative imperative of declinar

Romanian[edit]

Verb[edit]

decline

  1. third-person singular present subjunctive of declina
  2. third-person plural present subjunctive of declina

Spanish[edit]

Verb[edit]

decline

  1. Formal second-person singular (usted) imperative form of declinar.
  2. First-person singular (yo) present subjunctive form of declinar.
  3. Formal second-person singular (usted) present subjunctive form of declinar.
  4. Third-person singular (él, ella, also used with usted?) present subjunctive form of declinar.