noun, often attributive
\ˈdräp \

Definition of drop 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : the quantity of fluid that falls in one spherical mass a drop of rain

(2) drops plural : a dose of medicine measured by drops eye drops for dilating the pupil of the eye

b : a minute quantity or degree of something nonmaterial or intangible not a drop of meanness in her

c : a small quantity of drink hasn't touched a drop of alcohol in three years

d : the smallest practical unit of liquid measure

2 : something that resembles a liquid drop: such as

a : a pendent ornament attached to a piece of jewelry also : an earring with such a pendant

b : a small globular cookie or candy sucking on lemon drops

3 [ 2drop ]

a : the act or an instance of dropping : fall a sudden, short drop in an elevator

b : a decline in quantity or quality His income took a sudden drop. a drop in demand

c : a descent by parachute also : the people or equipment dropped by parachute expecting another drop this week

d : a place or central depository to which something (such as mail, money, or stolen property) is brought for distribution or transmission left the package at the drop also : the act of depositing something at such a place made the drop

4a : the distance from a higher to a lower level or through which something drops It's a twenty-foot drop from the top of the fence. a steep drop

b electrical engineering : a decrease in electric potential (see potential entry 2 sense 2b)

5 : a slot into which something is to be dropped

6 [ 2drop ] : something that drops, hangs, or falls: such as

a : a movable plate that covers the keyhole of a lock

b : an unframed piece of cloth stage scenery also : drop curtain

c : a hinged platform on a gallows

d : a fallen fruit

7 : the advantage of having an opponent covered (see cover entry 1 sense 1b(2)) with a firearm broadly : advantage, superiority usually used in the phrase get the drop on waiting to get the drop on me

8 : a move back from the line of scrimmage (as in preparation for making a forward pass) a quick drop

at the drop of a hat

: as soon as the slightest provocation is given : immediately loses her temper at the drop of a hat

drop in the bucket

: a part so small as to be negligible


dropped; dropping

Definition of drop (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to fall in drops

2a(1) : to fall (see fall entry 1 sense 1a) unexpectedly or suddenly The book dropped from her hand.

(2) : to descend (see descend sense 1) from one line or level to another the land drops to sea level

b : to fall in a state of collapse (see collapse entry 2 sense 1b) or death dropped from exhaustion

c of a playing card : to become played by reason of the obligation to follow suit

d : to fall or roll into a hole or basket

3 : to enter or pass as if without conscious effort of will (see will entry 2 sense 4a) into some state, condition, or activity dropped into sleep

4a : to cease to be of concern : lapse let the matter drop

b : to pass from view or notice : disappear often used with out drop out of sight

c : to become less production dropped often used with off

5 nautical : to move with a favoring wind or current usually used with down We dropped down the harbor.

transitive verb

1 : to let fall : cause to fall dropped the ball dropping bombs on the city

2a : give up sense 2, abandon drop an idea drop the charges

b : discontinue dropped what she was doing

c : to break off an association or connection with : dismiss drop her old friends was dropped by his sponsors students who dropped the class

3a : to utter or mention in a casual way drop a suggestion drop names

b : write drop us a line soon

4a : to lower or cause to descend from one level or position to another drop the hem two inches drop the water level

b : to cause to lessen or decrease : reduce dropped his speed

5 of an animal : to give birth to

6a : lose dropped three games dropped $50 in a poker game

b : spend drop $20 for lunch

c : to get rid of dropped 20 pounds

7a : to bring down with a shot or a blow dropped the buck with one shot dropping the world champion in the ring

b card games : to cause a cardholder to unwillingly play (a high card) dropped her ace

c : to toss or roll into a hole or basket drop a putt

8a : to deposit or deliver during a usually brief stop usually used with off drop the kids off at school

b : air-drop drop the supplies to the medical team

9 : to cause (the voice) to be less loud

10a linguistics : to leave (a letter representing a speech sound) unsounded drop the g in running

b : to leave out in writing : omit accidentally dropped a whole line

11 : to draw from an external point drop a perpendicular to the line

12 : to take (a drug) orally : swallow drop acid

drop a dime

: to inform authorities (such as the police) of another's wrongdoing

drop behind

: to fail to keep up

drop the ball

: to make a mistake especially by failing to take timely, effective, or proper action

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Other Words from drop


droppable \ˈdrä-pə-bəl \ adjective

Examples of drop in a Sentence


He squeezed the bottle until a few drops came out. She doesn't have a single drop of selfishness in her. The poet wrings the last drop of meaning from every word.


Be careful not to drop the chair on your foot. She dropped the apple core into the trash can. They dropped bombs on the city. He dropped the vase and it shattered into pieces. The player dropped the ball. The pen rolled to the edge of the table and dropped to the floor. The book dropped from my hand. The ball dropped between the right and center fielders. She was so tired she felt she would drop. He worked until he dropped.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The first drop, which arrives online tomorrow, features a Warhol-esque graphic of Brooke Shields’s silhouette from her iconic Calvin Klein Jeans campaign in 1980. Emily Farra, Vogue, "Calvin Klein Jeans Est. 1978 Is Raf Simons’s Latest Addition to the Brand—And Prices Start at Just $60," 13 July 2018 That's a nearly 8 percent drop from last year's attendance of 831,769, and the lowest attendance since at least 1993. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Summerfest in Milwaukee reports lowest attendance in at least 25 years," 13 July 2018 Start with a small amount — only a drop or two — and work it through your ends to seal in moisture and shine as the last step in your routine. Ashley Weatherford, The Cut, "Everything You Need to Know About Putting Oils on Your Face," 12 July 2018 If 28 liters is too big, drop to the 20-liter size. Graham Averill, Outside Online, "The Daypacks We Use for Hiking," 11 July 2018 With these staggered drops (not to mention her new liquid highlighter launch), Kat Von D might as well just take all our money. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Kat Von D Is Adding Three New Formulas to Her Trooper Tattoo Liner Range," 10 July 2018 Where to go local Walk along the Dunakorzó, the riverside promenade, for trans-Danube grandeur and drop-dead gorgeous views of city landmarks, like District I’s Buda Castle and V’s own Széchenyi Chain Bridge, a mid-19th-century wonder. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, "The Best of Budapest: A Guide for Strategic Travelers," 27 June 2018 But commenters on Seamon’s tweet are taking the gunshot wound drop-off lane as a sign of the times. Oona Goodin-smith, Philly.com, "Penn dedicates police emergency drop-off lane for gunshot victims," 24 June 2018 Day hike: Gorgeous Shadow Lake, often mirror-like and backed by Banner Peak and Mount Ritter, is drop-dead beautiful. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Trails, camps, lakes open for summer in Land of Muir," 17 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Hudson’s Bay is not the first store to drop Ivanka Trump’s line. refinery29.com, "Ivanka Trump’s Clothing Line Pulled From Yet Another Department Store," 14 July 2018 On Wednesday, protesters surrounded Lake Eola in downtown Orlando to ask Gov. Rick Scott to drop his appeals of a lawsuit brought by Orlando attorney John Morgan to allow smokeable marijuana. Marco Santana, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Marijuana advocates promote education amidst growing legalization push," 14 July 2018 His father passed away young, forcing him to drop school and start working at 13. Casey Quackenbush / Hong Kong, Time, "'We're Not Educated.' The Untold Story of Lung King Heen, the World's First Michelin Three-Star Chinese Restaurant," 12 July 2018 The state’s taxes are already set to gradually drop — to 5.5 percent from 6 percent — provided the state meets revenue targets. Allison Kite, kansascity, "Gov. Parson signs Missouri tax cut long sought by Republican lawmakers," 12 July 2018 The consumer advocate agreed to drop a court challenge as its part of the settlement. Andrew Maykuth, Philly.com, "Pa. approves Aqua's contentious $75M sewer system acquisition," 12 July 2018 There are, of course, new ways for players to dress up their avatars, more vehicles to ride and new items to hold — all small but beloved elements of the game that have prompted players to drop more than $10 at a time on various purchases. Alyssa Newcomb And Peter Maguire /, NBC News, "Video game 'Fortnite' is raking in millions and taking over the real world," 12 July 2018 Bond prices continued to rise even after the yuan started to drop rapidly against the dollar and other major counterparts last month. Mike Bird, WSJ, "China’s Bonds Buck the Emerging-Market Trend," 12 July 2018 But the biggest shock is that Tia comes back to drop a bomb that shakes up the entire foundation of my relationship with Colton. Becca Kufrin, PEOPLE.com, "Bachelorette Becca Kufrin Explains Her Reaction to Colton Being a Virgin: ' I Needed a Moment'," 11 July 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for drop


Middle English, from Old English dropa; akin to Old High German tropfo drop


see drop entry 1

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Statistics for drop

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for drop

The first known use of drop was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for drop



English Language Learners Definition of drop

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a very small amount of liquid that falls in a rounded shape

: a small amount of a drink

: a small amount of something (such as a quality)



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

: to let (something) fall

: to fall

: to lie down or fall down suddenly


\ˈdräp \

Kids Definition of drop

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small amount of liquid that falls in a rounded shape

2 drops plural : liquid medicine measured by drops ear drops

3 : something (as a small round candy) that is shaped like a liquid drop

4 : a small amount I'll have just a drop of tea.

5 : the distance of a fall a 20-foot drop

6 : a decrease in amount or quality a drop in sales

7 : an act of delivering something : a place where something is left to be picked up a mail drop


dropped; dropping

Kids Definition of drop (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to fall or let fall often by accident I dropped my ice cream cone!

2 : to go down suddenly The cliff drops straight down.

3 : to go or make lower The temperature dropped. He dropped his voice.

4 : to become less or make less Business has dropped.

6 : disappear sense 1 They dropped out of sight.

7 : to stop or let end Let the matter drop.

8 : quit Don't drop out of school.

9 : to make a brief visit We dropped in on a friend.

10 : to deliver with a quick stop Mom dropped us off at school.

11 : send sense 1 Drop me a note.

drop off

: to fall asleep


\ˈdräp \

Medical Definition of drop 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the quantity of fluid that falls in one spherical mass

b drops plural : a dose of medicine measured by drops eye drops for dilating the pupil of the eye

2 : the smallest practical unit of liquid measure that varies in size according to the specific gravity and viscosity of the liquid and to the conditions under which it is formed — compare minim


dropped; dropping

Medical Definition of drop (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to fall in drops

transitive verb

1 of an animal : to give birth to lambs dropped in June

2 : to take (a drug) orally drop acid

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Comments on drop

What made you want to look up drop? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


lying above or upon

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