Thesaurus

decline

noun

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1 a gradual sinking and wasting away of mind or body
  • Doctors tried to slow the patient's decline.
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3 a downward slope
  • The bicyclist lost control on the unexpectedly steep decline.
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4 a loss of status
  • The engagement at the small club was an unmistakable sign of the rock band's decline.
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5 the amount by which something is lessened
  • a huge decline in the value of the artwork after its authenticity was questioned
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Synonym Discussion of decline

deterioration, degeneration, decadence, decline mean the falling from a higher to a lower level in quality, character, or vitality. deterioration implies generally the impairment of value or usefulness.
    • the deterioration of the house through neglect
degeneration stresses physical, intellectual, or especially moral retrogression.
    • the degeneration of their youthful idealism into cynicism
decadence presupposes a reaching and passing the peak of development and implies a turn downward with a consequent loss in vitality or energy.
    • cited love of luxury as a sign of cultural decadence
decline differs from decadence in suggesting a more markedly downward direction and greater momentum as well as more obvious evidence of deterioration.
    • the meteoric decline of his career after the scandal

decline

verb

Synonyms and Antonyms of decline

1 to show unwillingness to accept, do, engage in, or agree to
  • He declined the invitation to the party.
  • She declined to participate in the soccer game.
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turn one's back on

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2 to be unwilling to grant
  • declined our request to hold a party
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3 to go to a lower level especially abruptly
  • New-car sales declined to their lowest level in years.
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4 to become worse or of less value
  • His reputation as a writer began to decline not long after his death.
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go to pot, go to seed (or run to seed)

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6 to lead or extend downward
  • The bike path declines toward the riverbank and then follows the river for several miles.
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Synonym Discussion of decline

decline, refuse, reject, repudiate, spurn mean to turn away by not accepting, receiving, or considering. decline often implies courteous refusal especially of offers or invitations.
    • declined his party's nomination
refuse suggests more positiveness or ungraciousness and often implies the denial of something asked for.
    • refused to lend them the money
reject implies a peremptory refusal by sending away or discarding.
    • rejected the manuscript as unpublishable
repudiate implies a casting off or disowning as untrue, unauthorized, or unworthy of acceptance.
    • teenagers who repudiate the values of their parents
spurn stresses contempt or disdain in rejection or repudiation.
    • spurned his overtures of friendship

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