write down

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See also: writedown and write-down



write down (third-person singular simple present writes down, present participle writing down, simple past wrote down, past participle written down)

  1. Used other than figuratively or idiomatically: see write,‎ down.
    I can't write down in the basement; it's cold there and my fingers cramp and get stiff.
  2. (transitive) To produce or set (something) down in writing; to record something.
    Synonyms: write up, record, transcribe, document, log, inscripturate
  3. (transitive, intransitive) To write (something) in a simple or condescending style.
    Coordinate terms: dumb down, talk down, talk down to
    • 2011, Ada Leverson, Love's Shadow: The Bloomsbury Group[1]:
      Good heavens, I can't write down to the level of the vulgar public!
  4. (transitive, accounting) To make a downward adjustment in the value of an asset.
    Synonym: devalue
    Antonym: write up
  5. (transitive) To condemn in writing; to document the faults, offenses, or wrongdoing of.
    • 1951 December, Michael Robbins, “John Francis's "History of the English Railway"”, in Railway Magazine, page 800:
      By 1859, D. Morier Evans was exhibiting [George] Hudson as the principal character in his rogues' gallery entitled "Facts, Failures and Frauds"; and at the hands of modern economic historians he has been written down as a common swindler.
    Synonym: write up
    See also: cite

Usage notes[edit]

  • As with many pairs of phrasal verbs that contain antonymic particles (such as up and down), write down and write up can nonetheless function as synonyms for some senses.

Derived terms[edit]