verb (1)
low·​er | \ ˈlau̇(-ə)r How to pronounce lower (audio) , ˈlō-ər How to pronounce lower (audio) \
variants: or less commonly \ ˈlau̇(-​ə)r How to pronounce lour (audio) \
lowered also loured; lowering also louring; lowers also lours

Definition of lower

 (Entry 1 of 4)

intransitive verb

1 : to look sullen : frown
2 : to be or become dark, gloomy, and threatening an overcast sky lowered over the village


variants: or less commonly lour

Definition of lower (Entry 2 of 4)


low·​er | \ ˈlō-ər How to pronounce lower (audio) \

Definition of lower (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : relatively low in position, rank, or order
2 : southern lower New York State
3 : less advanced in the scale of evolutionary development
4a : situated or held to be situated beneath the earth's surface
b capitalized : being an earlier epoch or series of the period or system named Lower Cretaceous Lower Paleolithic
5 : constituting the popular and often the larger and more representative branch of a bicameral legislative body lower house


verb (2)
low·​er | \ ˈlō-ər How to pronounce lower (audio) \
lowered; lowering; lowers

Definition of lower (Entry 4 of 4)

intransitive verb

: to move down : drop also : diminish

transitive verb

1a : to let descend : let down
b : to depress as to direction lower your aim
c : to reduce the height of
2a : to reduce in value, number, or amount
b(1) : to bring down in quality or character : degrade
(2) : abase, humble
c : to reduce the objective of
lower the boom
: to deal a crushing blow or punishment

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Synonyms & Antonyms for lower

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of lower in a Sentence

Noun he turned to see the scornful lower on her face Adjective the ship's upper and lower decks The message appeared on the lower portion of the screen. the mountain's upper and lower slopes The forecast is for strong winds at lower elevations. in the lower and higher latitudes the lower and upper peninsulas
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Of the 640 units within a quarter-mile of the golf course, 75 percent are low-density homes and 25 percent are on the lower end of medium, Nordquist said. Caitlin Anderson, Twin Cities, "Apple Valley Golf Course redevelopment likely to feature fewer homes than first proposed," 23 Nov. 2019 And daily records were falling even in places like Chicago that are no strangers to the lower end of the thermometer. John Ismay, New York Times, "The Arctic Plunge: From Feeling Like 92 to Freezing in a Day," 12 Nov. 2019 And somebody who is in prison generally falls at the lower end of the sympathy spectrum. Crystal Hill, Indianapolis Star, "Indiana will pay inmate $100K for each year he spent in solitary, lawyers say," 11 Nov. 2019 While all official statistics apply the same rate of inflation to the income of people living in all income brackets, evidence highlighted by the study suggests that inflation is much higher for people at the lower end of the income scale. Annalisa Merelli, Quartz, "Poverty in America is so expensive it now has its own inflation value," 6 Nov. 2019 Luckily, the price point is on the lower end (our favorites run between $40 and $100, depending on the size), so replacing it when it's done its time won’t bust your budget. Emma Wartzman, Bon Appétit, "A Nonstick Skillet Is Essential For More Than Just Scrambled Eggs," 31 Oct. 2019 Boards will also consider whether a candidate would be a first-time CEO, who will typically be paid at the lower end of the scale. Jeanne Sahadi, CNN, "Why CEOs are paid so much," 24 Oct. 2019 Bunnell said that there was a lot of inventory in his neighborhood of Cottage Grove, but that his home was at the lower end of the pricing spectrum. Michelle Sandlin, Houston Chronicle, "On the Move: Relocation expert shares personal relocation story," 19 Oct. 2019 Although $349,900 is on the lower end of the Fixer Upper houses up for sale, the price is still above Waco area’s median sale price of $187,500. Selena Barrientos, House Beautiful, "Fixer Upper’s “Dutch Door House” Was Just Relisted After Not Selling for Over a Year," 23 Sep. 2019

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

Verb (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

1575, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for lower

Verb (1)

Middle English louren; akin to Middle High German lūren to lie in wait


low entry 3

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Time Traveler for lower

Time Traveler

The first known use of lower was in the 13th century

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Statistics for lower

Cite this Entry

“Lower.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lowered. Accessed 12 December 2019.

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More Definitions for lower


How to pronounce lower (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lower

: located below another or others of the same kind
: located toward the bottom part of something
: not high above the ground


low·​er | \ ˈlō-ər How to pronounce lower (audio) \

Kids Definition of lower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : located below another or others of the same kind a lower floor
2 : located toward the bottom part of something the lower back
3 : placed below another or others in rank or order a lower court
4 : less advanced or developed lower animals


lowered; lowering

Kids Definition of lower (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to move to a level or position that is below or less than an earlier one The sun lowered in the west.
2 : to let or pull down He lowered a flag.
3 : to make or become less (as in value, amount, or volume) The store lowered the price.
4 : to reduce the height of We'll lower the fence.



Medical Definition of lower

: the lower member of a pair especially : a lower denture

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More from Merriam-Webster on lower

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lower

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lower

Spanish Central: Translation of lower

Nglish: Translation of lower for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lower for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lower

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


a period of high artistic development

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