Did you know?

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

collapse - 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.

Thesaurus diagram

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     collapse pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
  1. 1
    [uncountable] a situation in which something fails or stops existing

    The same economic problems had led to the collapse of the government.

    be on the point/brink/verge of collapse:

    The justice system was described as being on the point of collapse.

    Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    [uncountable] an occasion when a building or other structure falls down
  3. 3
    [countable/uncountable] an occasion when someone falls down and becomes very ill or unconscious
  4. 4
    [singular] a sudden fall in the value or level of something

    the collapse of the rouble

quiz invitation


a combination of a hotdog and a hamburger in a specially designed bread bun

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

patio diplomacy

high-level diplomats meeting and dining in an informal environment e.g. a party or club

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
Macmillan learn live love play