Did you know?

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

downfall - definition and synonyms


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.

noun [singular] downfall pronunciation in American English /ˈdaʊnˌfɔl/
  1. 1
    a sudden loss of power, status, or success
    bad investments that led to the company’s downfall
  2. 2
    something that causes the downfall of a person or group
    His political ambition was his downfall.


a fashion trend in which people intentionally wear ordinary, inexpensive, widely-available clothing

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


a flower or small bunch of flowers worn on the lapel of a jacket on special occasions

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