dwindle

verb
dwin·​dle | \ ˈdwin-dᵊl How to pronounce dwindle (audio) \
dwindled; dwindling\ -​(d)liŋ How to pronounce dwindling (audio) , -​dᵊl-​iŋ \

Definition of dwindle

intransitive verb

: to become steadily less : shrink Their savings dwindled to nothing. a dwindling population

transitive verb

: to make steadily less

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for dwindle

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 dwindle in a Sentence

Our energy dwindled as the meeting dragged on. The town's population is dwindling away.

Recent Examples on the Web

The ease of trading single stocks within the Russell 3000 index has dwindled and hovered near its lowest levels over the past decade, according to data from Goldman Sachs as of Dec. 18. Gunjan Banerji, WSJ, "Wall Street Struggles With the Bad Kind of Volatility," 13 Jan. 2019 Fraternities had dwindled at Yale in the 1960s, and no frat houses remained on campus by the time Kavanaugh arrived in fall 1983. Alanna Durkin Richer, The Seattle Times, "At Yale, Kavanaugh stayed out of debates at a time of many," 28 Aug. 2018 Indeed, outside of emergency preparations or worries, many educators are struggling to make ends meet as the average salary for public school teachers falls, benefits dwindle, and class sizes grow. Jennifer Calfas, Time, "‘They’re Really on Their Own.’ Santa Fe Reveals the Danger of Being a Substitute Teacher in Era of School Shootings," 24 May 2018 Their numbers dwindled and are reported to have reached a low of 20-some donkeys in the 1970s. Staff, The Christian Science Monitor, "Meanwhile on ... Scotland's Isle of Lewis and Harris, Christians are extending a welcoming hand to a new mosque," 17 May 2018 The Malaysian ringgit plummeted 35 percent, reserves dwindled and the stock market crashed and lost half its value. Bloomberg.com, "Bloomberg," 14 May 2018 As a result, indie rock’s penchant for puritanism and subcultural snobbery was dwindling, and authenticity was beginning to be privileged over obscurity. Emma Madden, Billboard, "How The Yeah Yeahs' 'Maps' Helped Change the Way We View the Relationship Between Pop and Indie," 26 Apr. 2018 The number of people who were connected to the dead had dwindled, and only a fraction of the remains were claimed by relatives and given individual plots. Gary Kamiya, San Francisco Chronicle, "How San Francisco evicted thousands of dead people," 13 Apr. 2018 China, the world's biggest energy user, is growing more reliant on overseas crude as its domestic reserves dwindle and economic growth spurs higher demand. Bloomberg News, Houston Chronicle, "China' largest gas importer sees improved ties with U.S. producers," 10 Apr. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of dwindle

1596, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for dwindle

probably frequentative of dwine to waste away, from Middle English, from Old English dwīnan; akin to Old Norse dvīna to pine away, deyja to die — more at die

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about dwindle

Dictionary Entries near dwindle

Dwiggins

Dwight

Dwight-Lloyd

dwindle

dwine

dwt

D&X

Statistics for dwindle

Last Updated

19 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dwindle

The first known use of dwindle was in 1596

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for dwindle

dwindle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dwindle

: to gradually become smaller

dwindle

verb
dwin·​dle | \ ˈdwin-dəl How to pronounce dwindle (audio) \
dwindled; dwindling

Kids Definition of dwindle

: to make or become less or smaller … she had suddenly dwindled down to the size of a little doll …— Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on dwindle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dwindle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dwindle

Spanish Central: Translation of dwindle

Nglish: Translation of dwindle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dwindle for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dwindle

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

WORD OF THE DAY

the way words of a language are spelled

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!