Did you know?

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

decay - definition and synonyms

 
Close

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.

Close

Thesaurus

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.

more
noun [uncountable] decay pronunciation in British English /dɪˈkeɪ/
  1. 1
    the gradual destruction of something as a result of a natural process of change

    Bacteria cause the decay of dead plants and animals.

    Sweets cause tooth decay.

    1. a.
      the part of something that has gradually been destroyed
  2. 2
    the process by which a building or an area gradually gets into a worse state because it has not been looked after

    urban decay

    fall into decay (=get into a worse state):

    The farmhouse fell into disuse and decay.

  3. 3
    the process of becoming gradually worse in quality, or weaker in power or influence

    the social and moral decay of the country

unicorn

a start-up … whose value has reached more than one billion US dollars

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

crafternoon

an afternoon full of crafts

add a word

Blog

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