decrease

verb
de·​crease | \ di-ˈkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) , ˈdē-ˌkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) \
decreased; decreasing

Definition of decrease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to grow progressively less (as in size, amount, number, or intensity) Yearly sales decreased by five percent. His little remaining strength had been decreasing rapidly for two or three days preceding …— Charles Dickens

transitive verb

: to cause to decrease decrease the risk of heart disease trying to decrease our use of fossil fuels

decrease

noun
de·​crease | \ ˈdē-ˌkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) , di-ˈkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) \

Definition of decrease (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the process of growing progressively less (as in size, amount, number, or intensity) : the process of decreasing a decrease in productivity
2 : an amount of diminution : reduction a decrease of 20,000 saw a 20% decrease in violent crime

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Other Words from decrease

Verb

decreasingly \ di-​ˈkrē-​siŋ-​lē How to pronounce decreasingly (audio) , dē-​ \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for decrease

Verb

decrease, lessen, diminish, reduce, abate, dwindle mean to grow or make less. decrease suggests a progressive decline in size, amount, numbers, or intensity. slowly decreased the amount of pressure lessen suggests a decline in amount rather than in number. has been unable to lessen her debt diminish emphasizes a perceptible loss and implies its subtraction from a total. his visual acuity has diminished reduce implies a bringing down or lowering. you must reduce your caloric intake abate implies a reducing of something excessive or oppressive in force or amount. the storm abated dwindle implies progressive lessening and is applied to things growing visibly smaller. their provisions dwindled slowly

Examples of decrease in a Sentence

Verb Sales decreased by five percent this year. The driver decreased her speed as she approached the curve. These changes will decrease our expenses. Noun Studies report a recent decrease in traffic accidents. Because of the injury, some decrease in mobility is to be expected. a decrease of three dollars
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But the same drug may effectively decrease the mortality rate of seriously ill Covid-19 patients also receiving respiratory support, according to a preliminary study. Claire Bugos, Smithsonian Magazine, "What to Expect When Covid-19 and the Flu Season Collide," 7 Oct. 2020 Moving further away from Pence will decrease the concentration of infectious aerosols around Harris that Pence might be producing, but a simple plexiglass partition won’t provide much additional benefit. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Q&A: New CDC guidelines acknowledge COVID-19 can spread through air. Here’s why that matters," 7 Oct. 2020 Corporate and government revenue would decrease permanently, and therefore so would innovation and R&D. Andrew Mcafee, Wired, "Why Degrowth Is the Worst Idea on the Planet," 6 Oct. 2020 Staring at computer, TV or smartphone screens can decrease your overall blink rate by 33%, according to the University of Iowa Health Care. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Blink now: Increased screen time during the pandemic sends more people to the eye doctor," 5 Oct. 2020 The sugar doesn't decrease, but the sweetness becomes less obvious, especially as the fruit flavors that magnify sweetness fade with age. Rachel King, Fortune, "Why right now is the time to start aging your wine collection," 4 Oct. 2020 The adjustment would decrease a water bill of 10,000 gallons from $49.80 to $38.50. Brandi Addison, Dallas News, "This new program will help Allen residents pay their utility bills," 1 Oct. 2020 In contrast, nearly every single policy proposed by Mr. Biden and Kamala Harris would decrease the value of your life savings. Grover Norquist, WSJ, "The Trump-Biden Stakes: Your Life Savings," 30 Sep. 2020 Gradually decrease the distance between your hands and your feet to progress the exercise, and eventually elevate your feet (the higher, the more difficult). Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, "Time-Crunched? Try This Effective 10-Minute Workout," 29 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun An overall decrease in donations was exacerbated by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cohen said. Coral Murphy, USA TODAY, "Nonprofits face grim outlook as worried Americans cut back on donations during COVID-19 pandemic," 14 Oct. 2020 That’s a decrease from the previous reporting period, when 10.7% of such patients tested positive. Jared Weber, Dallas News, "Dallas County adds 418 COVID-19 cases and 4 deaths; Tarrant County reports most cases in a single day in almost two months," 12 Oct. 2020 The staff justification for the denial said that the loss of trees and native soils would increase stormwater runoff, decrease floodwater storage and result in pollution that could harm the lower Tchefuncte River. Sara Pagones | Staff Writer, NOLA.com, "Property can't be cleared for Medline project near Covington, Board of Adjustment decides," 11 Oct. 2020 The Cuyahoga County Board of Health reported 295 more coronavirus cases in the county this past week, a decrease from the previous week when their were 319 new suburban cases reported. Kaylee Remington, cleveland, "Cuyahoga County Board of Health reports 295 additional cases of coronavirus in the county, report says," 10 Oct. 2020 This year's renewable energy expansion is driven in part by the expiration of the wind production tax credit and a decrease in the investment tax credit available to solar projects. Benjamin Storrow, Scientific American, "U.S. Wind and Solar Installation Are Smashing Records, But the Trend May Not Last," 8 Oct. 2020 The report said the city’s population may be declining based on the tax decrease. Roland Li, SFChronicle.com, "S.F. is facing its worst fiscal crisis in decades. Here’s the city’s 41-point plan for recovery," 8 Oct. 2020 So the enrollment decrease there is likely impacting individuals of color more. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Half of Utah’s public colleges see lower enrollment, including major drop at Salt Lake Community College," 8 Oct. 2020 Ventura County officials were prepared for the move following a decrease in positivity rate and case count. Colleen Shalby, Los Angeles Times, "In a first, 2 counties move backward on state’s reopening plan; Ventura moves forward," 6 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'decrease.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of decrease

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for decrease

Verb and Noun

Middle English decreessen, from Anglo-French decrestre, from Latin decrescere, from de- + crescere to grow — more at crescent

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Time Traveler for decrease

Time Traveler

The first known use of decrease was in the 14th century

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Statistics for decrease

Last Updated

16 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Decrease.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/decrease. Accessed 25 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for decrease

decrease

verb
How to pronounce decrease (audio) How to pronounce decrease (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of decrease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to become smaller in size, amount, number, etc.
: to make (something) smaller in size, amount, number, etc.

decrease

noun
How to pronounce decrease (audio) How to pronounce decrease (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of decrease (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of becoming smaller or of making something smaller in size, amount, number, etc.
: the amount by which something is made smaller

decrease

verb
de·​crease | \ di-ˈkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) \
decreased; decreasing

Kids Definition of decrease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to grow less or cause to grow less The numbers of students decreased.

decrease

noun
de·​crease | \ ˈdē-ˌkrēs How to pronounce decrease (audio) \

Kids Definition of decrease (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the process of growing less a gradual decrease in interest
2 : the amount by which something grows less The school saw a five percent decrease in students.

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Comments on decrease

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