Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word


 - definitions and thesaurus

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb descend pronunciation in American English /dɪˈsend/ 
Word Forms
present tense
present participledescending
past tensedescended
past participledescended
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] formal to go down a mountain or slope, or to go down some stairs

    I descended into the valley.

    He slowly descended the stairs.

    1. a.
      [intransitive] to come nearer to the ground

      The airplane was preparing to descend.

    2. b.
      [intransitive] to become lower

      From here the path descends steeply.

  2. 2
    [intransitive] humorous to come down to a lower level, especially a lower social level
    Synonyms and related words for this sense of descend
    Synonyms and related words for this sense of descend
  3. 3
    [intransitive] literary if night or darkness descends, it starts to get dark

    At 6:30 p.m. the tropical darkness descends.

    Synonyms and related words for this sense of descend


web content which is specifically intended to make Facebook users click the 'Like' button associated with it

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the possibility of Greece leaving the Eurozone …

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog