noun, often attributive
\ ˈdräp How to pronounce drop (audio) \

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 [drop entry 2]
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 [drop entry 2] : 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 outdrop 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 downWe 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 offdrop 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 How to pronounce droppable (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for drop

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of drop in a Sentence

Noun 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. Verb 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 Gift drop-off began Nov. 21 at Orange Village Hall, 4600 Lander Road. Thomas Jewell, cleveland, "All points bulletin goes out for Solon’s annual ‘Shop With A Cop’ raffle," 23 Nov. 2019 Ratings have dipped slightly from a peak on Day 1, Nov. 13, which drew an audience of 13.1 million, but the drop-off is less than what many sitcoms see after a season premiere. Michael M. Grynbaum, New York Times, "‘Tuesday Afternoon Impeachment’ Is as Big as ‘Monday Night Football’," 22 Nov. 2019 Tree drop-off and bidding will be during church office hours or anytime the church is open. courant.com, "Community News For The Stafford Edition," 22 Nov. 2019 Indiana was an explosive team that made plays downfield under Penix's direction, and there's been no drop-off with Ramsey, who started last season's game against the Wolverines. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Here's why Michigan football won't overlook Indiana ahead of Ohio State showdown," 22 Nov. 2019 Their clout was vividly displayed earlier this year when MassPort attempted to raise its $3.25 fee for pick-ups from the airport to $5 for both pick-ups and drop-offs. BostonGlobe.com, "Seeing red," 21 Nov. 2019 Border agents arrested Warren, along with two undocumented migrants, Jose Sacaria-Godoy and Kristian Perez-Villanueva, on Jan. 17, 2018, in a building No More Deaths uses as a staging ground for water drop-offs in the desert. Rafael Carranza, USA TODAY, "Jury acquits Arizona border volunteer Scott Warren of harboring immigrants," 20 Nov. 2019 The Indiana State Police said, though, that there may be some lane closures to accommodate buses to on- and offload. Metered parking along Washington Street will be bagged to allow for bus drop-off and pick-up. Arika Herron, Indianapolis Star, "Here's everything you need to know to attend (or avoid) Red for Ed Action Day," 18 Nov. 2019 From 2015 to 2018, according to Sports Info Solutions, more play-action usage actually correlated with an increase in play-action efficiency, not a drop-off. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "Ravens film study: With the NFL’s top ground game and tight end group, play-action’s always a good idea," 13 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Then investigators from China’s antitrust authority raided DuPont’s Shanghai office in December, seizing documents and computers -- and also telling company officials to drop the case against the local partner. Washington Post, "Forced or Not? Why U.S. Says China Steals Technology," 25 Nov. 2019 Two county agencies were urging the county commissioners 50 years ago this week to drop a 6 percent interest rate ceiling to allow the sale of up to $28 million in bonds. Erika Butler, baltimoresun.com, "50 years ago: Harford needs to sell $28 million in bonds, seeks to drop interest rate ceiling," 25 Nov. 2019 Temperatures were predicted to drop to the low 20s in West Anchorage, near the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, while areas in the east side of town were expected to have temperatures in the mid-teens. Tess Williams, Anchorage Daily News, "Snow in Anchorage followed by ‘coldest temperatures we’ve seen in awhile’," 25 Nov. 2019 The temperate is expected to drop into the mid-40s at night, and the chance of rain climbs to 90%. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "Indianapolis weather: Plan for slick roads as you travel for Thanksgiving," 24 Nov. 2019 In the second half, Patterson threw a bomb to Bell downfield — but Bell appeared to drop the pass. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football stock watch: Josh Uche dominates, Lavert Hill stumbles," 24 Nov. 2019 Rogers said to expect lows in the mid to upper 40s each day with Saturday temperatures predicted to drop to the low 40s. Alyssa Stoney, azcentral, "Say it isn't so: Another storm predicted to bring rain on Thanksgiving Day," 24 Nov. 2019 Ruiz, who carries a lot of his weight in the midsection, doesn't look like a top heavyweight but his fast hands and power combined to drop Joshua four times before the fight ended in the seventh round. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "Deontay Wilder vs. Luis Ortiz fight (11/23/19) time, channel, live stream; how to watch online," 23 Nov. 2019 Noelle The North Pole gets an upgrade with an A-List Hollywood cast in Noelle, one of the first original films to drop on Disney’s new streaming service. Rachel E. Greenspan, Time, "Here Are the Best Christmas Rom-Coms Coming Out This Year," 23 Nov. 2019

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

Noun and Verb

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

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Time Traveler for drop

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for drop

Last Updated

27 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Drop.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/drops. Accessed 5 December 2019.

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More Definitions for drop


How to pronounce drop (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of drop

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a very small amount of liquid that falls in a rounded shape
informal : 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 How to pronounce drop (audio) \

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 How to pronounce drop (audio) \

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)

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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More from Merriam-Webster on drop

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for drop

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with drop

Spanish Central: Translation of drop

Nglish: Translation of drop for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of drop for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about drop

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