de·​press | \ di-ˈpres How to pronounce depress (audio) , dē- \
depressed; depressing; depresses

Definition of depress

transitive verb

1 obsolete : repress, subjugate
2a : to press down depress a typewriter key
b : to cause to sink to a lower position
3 : to lessen the activity or strength of drugs that may depress the appetite
4 : sadden, discourage don't let the news depress you
5 : to decrease the market value or marketability of

Other Words from depress

depressible \ di-​ˈpre-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce depress (audio) , dē-​ \ adjective

Examples of depress in a Sentence

The news seemed to depress him a little. I don't mean to depress you, but there's no way we can win. We were all depressed by the loss. You shouldn't let this kind of problem depress you. These changes could depress the economy. Market conditions are likely to depress earnings in the next quarter. depressing the price of a stock Slowly depress the car's brake pedal. Depress the “shift” key on your keyboard. The doctor will depress your tongue and look at your throat. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Markets will have to adjust Zero percent interest rates depress government bond rates, essentially forcing investors to bet on riskier assets like stocks. Matt Egan, CNN, 27 July 2022 Many economists and investors expect higher energy prices and supply disruptions stemming from the war to depress growth in Europe. Caitlin Mccabe, WSJ, 20 May 2022 Congressional inaction, in particular, can frustrate and depress voter turnout, saidJohn Della Volpe, director of polling at Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics. Anumita Kaur, Los Angeles Times, 1 June 2022 Saudi Arabia may also be loath to boost production just as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank warn of a global economic slowdown and a potential recession, which would depress oil demand anyway, experts said. Mo Abbas, NBC News, 15 July 2022 Meanwhile, as the White House was attempting to seize credit for a price fluctuation beyond his control, the administration’s senior political appointees used the week to take more actions to depress the domestic oil and gas industry. David Blackmon, Forbes, 3 July 2022 Those most affected— children living downwind, close to the airport—exhibited blood lead levels similar to those at Flint, enough to depress elementary students’ reading and math scores. Quartz, 16 June 2022 In addition to causing hydrocarbon shortages and strengthening the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia, the coordinated effort to depress oil and gas production is potentially a violation of American antitrust law. Sean Fieler, WSJ, 2 June 2022 Even if demand for outdoor gear is high, no one knows for sure how the pandemic will continue to depress spending power or disrupt the supply chains that retailers rely on for products. Nora Caplan-bricker, Outside Online, 18 Aug. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of depress

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for depress

Middle English, from Middle French depresser, from Latin depressus, past participle of deprimere to press down, from de- + premere to press — more at press

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The first known use of depress was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

13 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Depress.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for depress


de·​press | \ di-ˈpres How to pronounce depress (audio) \
depressed; depressing

Kids Definition of depress

1 : to press down Depress the "enter" key.
2 : to make sad or discouraged Don't let the news depress you.
3 : to lessen the activity or strength of Bad weather had depressed sales.


transitive verb
de·​press | \ di-ˈpres How to pronounce depress (audio) \

Medical Definition of depress

1 : to diminish the activity, strength, or yield of able to depress irritability of the heart muscle by the use of such a drug as procaine
2 : to lower in spirit or mood

More from Merriam-Webster on depress

Nglish: Translation of depress for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of depress for Arabic Speakers


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