Did you know?

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

depression - 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     depression pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
  1. 1
    [uncountable] a feeling of being extremely unhappy

    Some children show signs of anxiety and depression at exam time.

    1. a.
      a medical condition in which a person is so unhappy that they cannot live a normal life
      suffer from depression:

      She suffered a lot from depression after the death of her husband.

  2. 2
    [countable/uncountable] economics a period of time when there is a lot of unemployment and poverty because there is very little economic activity

    periods of economic depression

    The country is sliding into a depression.

    1. a.

      the Depression

      in the UK, US, and some other countries, a period during the late 1920s and early 1930s when there were very few jobs and a lot of poverty because the economy was so bad
  3. 4
    [countable] science an area on a surface that is lower than the parts around it
  • Facebook
  • Twitter


a lifestyle focussing on simple pleasures such as comfort and cosiness in the home, and spending time with friends and family

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


a form of location that involves the underwater detonation of a bomb which causes sound waves that are picked up by ships

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