top·ple | \ ˈtä-pəl \
toppled; toppling\ˈtä-p(ə-)liŋ \

Definition of topple 

intransitive verb

: to fall from or as if from being top-heavy

transitive verb

1 : to cause to topple

2a : overthrow sense 2 topple a dictator

b : defeat sense 3

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Synonyms & Antonyms for topple


fall, slip, stumble, trip, tumble


get up, rise, stand (up), uprise

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Examples of topple in a Sentence

The strong winds toppled many trees. The earthquake toppled the buildings. The tree toppled into the river. The rebels tried to topple the dictator. The phone company has toppled its local competition.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In Indonesia, for instance, conservative forces — Islamists, the old top brass and nationalist hawks — are trying to topple the country’s relatively liberal president, Joko Widodo, in next year’s election. Washington Post, "How the Kremlin turned the Russian president into a global icon," 12 July 2018 Their only loss came by a touchdown to Florida in the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party, paving the way for Ohio State to topple Miami in the national title game. Will Mccollister,, "On the Outside Looking In: The Best Teams to Finish No. 3 in the BCS Era," 11 July 2018 Burbank, the District 16 representative, suffered a 10-0 loss Saturday to San Marino of District 17 and came back Sunday to topple host Canyon Country of District 40, 4-1. Jeff Tully,, "Burbank 8-10 All-Stars softball falls short of title," 4 July 2018 Had that been the case, El Tri would rightly have been looking up and onwards, at ways to topple the long-standing bluebloods of the game, rather than worrying about such trivial matters as local boasting. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Why USMNT fans should celebrate Mexico's World Cup loss," 3 July 2018 The Iranian government has long branded Rajavi's group as a terrorist organization, saying that is on a mission to topple the country's theocratic leadership. Eric Shawn, Fox News, "Protesters against Iranian regime see a free Tehran ahead," 30 June 2018 Three years after a large influx of migrants and asylum-seekers, the vexed issue of migration has become a popular populist issue and threatens to topple the long reign of Europe’s most prominent leader, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany. Steven Erlanger, The Seattle Times, "Europe struggles with migrant crisis as leaders toughen stances," 25 June 2018 Trump ran for the presidency on a vow to topple seven decades of American policy that had favored ever-freer trade among nations. Paul Wiseman,, "Trump jabbed first, and now world hits back in trade fight," 22 June 2018 The problem is that North Korea sees its nuclear weapons as an invaluable insurance policy against the U.S. invading and attempting to topple the Kim dynasty. Alexander Smith /, NBC News, "Best and worst-case scenarios for Trump meeting with Kim Jong Un," 11 June 2018

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

1590, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for topple

frequentative of top entry 3

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Statistics for topple

Last Updated

21 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for topple

The first known use of topple was in 1590

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More Definitions for topple



English Language Learners Definition of topple

: to cause (something) to become unsteady and fall

: to remove (a government or a leader) from power

: to win a victory over (someone or something) in a war, contest, etc.


top·ple | \ ˈtä-pəl \
toppled; toppling

Kids Definition of topple

: to fall or cause to fall from an upright position When he pulled a book out, several others toppled to the floor.

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