upside down


up·​side down ˈəp-ˌsīd-ˈdau̇n How to pronounce upside down (audio)
: in such a way that the upper and the lower parts are reversed in position
: in or into great disorder
turned their world upside down
upside-down adjective

Example Sentences

You hung the picture upside down! To remove the plant, turn the pot upside down and tap gently on the bottom to loosen it. The baby was holding the book upside down.
Recent Examples on the Web One of Piet Mondrian's iconic Modernist paintings may have been hanging upside down for decade, according to research from an art historian -- but the piece of art isn't going to be turned right-side up any time soon. Zoe Sottile, CNN, 30 Oct. 2022 An art historian recently discovered one of Piet Mondrian's paintings has been hanging upside down for 75 years. Emily Burack, Town & Country, 28 Oct. 2022 If a tube feeder’s perches are located above its feeding ports, only birds that can feed while hanging upside down can use them, like nuthatches and woodpeckers. Kj Callihan, Better Homes & Gardens, 17 Oct. 2022 His favorable-unfavorable rating is upside down by double digits, 31%-47%. Susan Page, USA TODAY, 4 Oct. 2022 And now the NFC West is upside down and the 49ers’ early schedule seems tougher than adverstised. Ann Killion, San Francisco Chronicle, 13 Sep. 2022 Brown said the vehicle being upside down in the water complicated the search process. Melissa Hernandez, Los Angeles Times, 22 Aug. 2022 One is upside down, with its two wheels pointed up. Martin Weil, Washington Post, 22 Aug. 2022 The names were long and silly, and the bottles were upside down, which caused leakage. Jane Daly, Harper's BAZAAR, 1 Aug. 2022 See More

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

Word History


alteration of Middle English up so doun, from up + so + doun down

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of upside down was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near upside down

Cite this Entry

“Upside down.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

upside down


up·​side down ˌəp-ˌsīd-ˈdau̇n How to pronounce upside down (audio)
: with the upper part underneath and the lower part on top
: in or into great disorder
upside-down adjective

Legal Definition

upside down


: underwater
upside down mortgages
upside down homes
upside down homeowners

More from Merriam-Webster on upside down

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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