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verb collapse pronunciation in American English /kəˈlæps/
Word Forms
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present tense
I/you/we/theycollapse
he/she/itcollapses
present participlecollapsing
past tensecollapsed
past participlecollapsed
  1. 1
    [intransitive] if a building or other structure collapses, it suddenly falls down

    There were fears that the roof would collapse.

  2. 2
    [intransitive] to suddenly fail or stop existing

    The trial collapsed amid allegations that officers fabricated evidence.

    collapse under the strain/pressure:

    The old system would have collapsed under the strain.

  3. 3
    [intransitive] to suddenly fall down and become very sick or unconscious

    A man had collapsed on the hospital steps.

    I ended up collapsing with exhaustion.

    1. a.
      to let your body fall onto a chair, bed, etc. because you are very tired
      collapse in/into/onto:

      He collapsed in an exhausted heap.

  4. 4
    [intransitive] an object that collapses can be folded or separated into parts, so that it takes up less space

    The chairs collapse for easy storage.

    1. a.
      [transitive] to fold something, or to separate its parts, so that it takes up less space

      Could you help me to collapse the table?

  5. 5
    [intransitive/transitive] to lose the air that is inside and become flat, or to make this happen

    His heart was failing and one of his lungs had collapsed.

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