de|cline1 W2 [dıˈklaın] n [singular, U]
a decrease in the quality, quantity, or importance of something
decline in
There has been a decline in the size of families.
decline of
the decline of manufacturing
rapid/sharp/steep/dramatic decline
a rapid decline in unemployment
steady/gradual/long-term decline
The island's population initially numbered 180, but there was a gradual decline until only 40 people were left.
the social and economic decline faced by many cities
in decline
There's a widely held belief that educational standards are in decline (=falling) .
fall/go etc into decline
The port fell into decline (=became less important and less busy) in the 1950s.
decline 2
decline2 W3 v
2¦(say no)¦
3¦(become worse)¦
4 somebody's declining years
[Date: 1300-1400; : French; Origin: décliner, from Latin declinare 'to turn aside, inflect']
1.) ¦(DECREASE)¦
to decrease in quantity or importance
Spending on information technology has declined.
Car sales have declined by a quarter.
After the war, the city declined in importance.
2.) ¦(SAY NO)¦ [I and T] [i]formal
to say no politely when someone invites you somewhere, offers you something, or wants you to do something
Offered the position of chairman, Smith declined, preferring to keep his current job.
Mary declined a hot drink and went to her room.
decline an offer/invitation etc
Mary declined Jay's invitation to dinner.
decline to do sth
The court declined to review her case.
The minister declined to comment (=refused to speak to people who report the news) about the progress of the peace talks.
to become gradually worse in quality
Her health has been declining progressively for several months.
Qualified staff are leaving and standards are declining.
4.) sb's declining years
[i]formal the last years of someone's life
5.) ¦(GRAMMAR)¦
if a noun, ↑pronoun, or adjective declines, its form changes according to whether it is the ↑subject, ↑object etc of a sentence
b) [T]
if you decline a noun, ↑pronoun, or adjective, you show the various forms that it can take
>declining[i] adj
declining attendance at baseball games

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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  • Decline — De*cline , n. [F. d[ e]clin. See {Decline}, v. i.] 1. A falling off; a tendency to a worse state; diminution or decay; deterioration; also, the period when a thing is tending toward extinction or a less perfect state; as, the decline of life; the …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Decline — is a change over time from previously efficient to inefficient organizational functioning, from previously rational to non rational organizational and individual decision making, from previously law abiding to law violating organizational and… …   Wikipedia

  • Decline — De*cline , v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Declined}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Declining}.] [OE. declinen to bend down, lower, sink, decline (a noun), F. d[ e]cliner to decline, refuse, fr. L. declinare to turn aside, inflect (a part of speech), avoid; de + clinare …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Decline — De*cline , v. t. 1. To bend downward; to bring down; to depress; to cause to bend, or fall. [1913 Webster] In melancholy deep, with head declined. Thomson. [1913 Webster] And now fair Phoebus gan decline in haste His weary wagon to the western… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • decline — vb Decline, refuse, reject, repudiate, spurn are comparable when they mean to turn away something or someone by not consenting to accept, receive, or consider it or him. Decline is the most courteous of these terms and is used chiefly in respect… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • decline — [n1] lessening abatement, backsliding, comedown, cropper*, decay, decrepitude, degeneracy, degeneration, descent, deterioration, devolution, diminution, dissolution, dive, downfall, downgrade, downturn, drop, dwindling, ebb, ebbing, enfeeblement …   New thesaurus

  • decline — [dē klīn′, diklīn′] vi. declined, declining [ME declinen < OFr decliner, to bend, turn aside < L declinare, to bend from, inflect < de , from (see DE ) + clinare, to bend: see LEAN1] 1. to bend, turn, or slope downward or aside 2. a) …   English World dictionary

  • decline — I noun abatement, act of crumbling, act of dwindling, act of falling away, act of lessening, act of losing ground, act of shrinking, act of slipping back, act of wasting away, act of weakening, act of worsening, atrophy, backward step, cheapening …   Law dictionary

  • décliné — ⇒DÉCLINÉ, ÉE, part. passé et adj. I. Part. passé de décliner1. II. Adj. Qui s écarte d une direction donnée. A. [En parlant d un astre] Qui retombe après avoir atteint son point culminant. Les feux des soleils déclinés (RÉGNIER, Prem. poèmes,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • décliné — décliné, ée (dé kli né, née) part. passé. 1°   Fléchi suivant les règles de la déclinaison. Un mot décliné. 2°   Terme de procédure. Dont on n accepte pas la compétence. Cette juridiction déclinée par les parties.    Par extension, refusé. Une… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • decline — ► VERB 1) become smaller, weaker, or less in quality or quantity. 2) politely refuse. 3) (especially of the sun) move downwards. 4) Grammar form (a noun, pronoun, or adjective) according to case, number, and gender. ► NOUN ▪ a gradual and… …   English terms dictionary

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