From Middle English *doun-casten, *adoun-casten (inferred from Middle English adoun-casting (“downcasting”), adoun-cast (“overthrow, destruction”)), modelled similarly to other constructions in Middle English (namely, Middle English adoun-throwen (“to throw down”), adoun-werpen (“to throw down”)), equivalent to down- + cast.
- (adjective, noun)
- (of eyes) Looking downwards.
- 1717, John Dryden, Canace to Macareus:
- 'Tis love, said she; and then my downcast eyes, / And guilty dumbness, witness'd my surprise.
- (of a person) Feeling despondent.
downcast (plural downcasts)
- (computing) A cast from supertype to subtype.
- (obsolete) A melancholy look.
- (mining) A ventilating shaft down which the air passes in circulating through a mine.
- (transitive, obsolete) To cast or throw down; to turn downward.
- (transitive, Scotland) To taunt; to reproach; to upbraid.
- (transitive, computing) To cast from supertype to subtype.
- Antonym: upcast