down·​play | \ ˈdau̇n-ˌplā How to pronounce downplay (audio) \
downplayed; downplaying; downplays

Definition of downplay

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Examples of downplay in a Sentence

Athletes often downplay their injuries. he self-deprecatingly downplays his own contributions to the festival's success

Recent Examples on the Web

The Eagles can pull the reins back – Pederson has downplayed his quarterback’s progress for months – but many teammates have mentioned Wentz’s competitiveness when asked about his increasing participation in workouts. Jeff Mclane,, "Carson Wentz's velocity is the best indicator of the Eagles QB's remarkable progress," 6 June 2018 Democratic leadership has downplayed the idea that a packed Senate calendar could leave lawmakers scrambling. Jonathan Allen /, NBC News, "GOP's midterm one-two punch: Keep Trump on the trail, Senate Dems in D.C.," 29 May 2018 But Murphy has downplayed the idea at a time when two major national figures from Connecticut — former Senators Chris Dodd and Joe Lieberman — never went far in their presidential attempts. Christopher Keating,, "Democrats Nominate Chris Murphy For Second Term As State Convention Kicks Off," 19 May 2018 The officer has downplayed his role, the union president said, brushing aside praise by asking about the victims. Natalie Obiko Pearson,, "One Minute, No Gunshots: Toronto Officer Takes Down Van Suspect," 24 Apr. 2018 City Councilman Jason Williams has downplayed the notion that the committee meeting was key to the overall approval of the plant, saying the vote during that meeting was only procedural. Kevin Litten,, "Entergy power plant opponents file lawsuit challenging legality of meeting," 20 Apr. 2018 Cleveland has downplayed its desire to capture the third seed recently. Chris Fedor,, "Why Cleveland Cavaliers falling to fourth in Eastern Conference is significant: Chris Fedor," 7 Apr. 2018 On the Sunday shows, three Democratic senators downplayed calls to get rid of ICE, trying to bring the focus back to Trump. Margaret Hartmann, Daily Intelligencer, "Is ‘Abolish ICE’ a Winning Midterm Message for Democrats?," 2 July 2018 After the vote totals were announced, House minority leader Nancy Pelosi downplayed the significance of Ocasio-Cortez's win and her colleague's defeat. Jay Willis, GQ, "Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Won Not Because Her Ideas Are Radical, But Because They're Good," 27 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'downplay.' 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 downplay

1954, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for downplay

Last Updated

10 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for downplay

The first known use of downplay was in 1954

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English Language Learners Definition of downplay

: to make (something) seem smaller or less important

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More from Merriam-Webster on downplay

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with downplay

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for downplay

Spanish Central: Translation of downplay

Nglish: Translation of downplay for Spanish Speakers

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