Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

2017 Word of the Year

downward

[doun-werd] /ˈdaʊn wərd/
adverb
1.
Also, downwards. from a higher to a lower place or condition.
2.
down from a source or beginning:
As the river flows downward, it widens.
3.
from a past time, predecessor, or ancestor:
The estate was handed downward from generation to generation.
adjective
4.
moving or tending to a lower place or condition.
5.
descending from a source or beginning.
Origin of downward
1150-1200
1150-1200; Middle English dounward, aphetic variant of adounward, Old English adūnweard. See down1, -ward
Related forms
downwardly, adverb
downwardness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for downward
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I know it all by heart—all the things to say to a man on the downward path.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • A moment later they were on the downward slope, and she had vanished from their view.

    The White Company Arthur Conan Doyle
  • The harder you blow the greater will be the downward movement.

    Flying Machines W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
  • The hands are thrust upward, outward, and downward with force.

  • He indicated the third person by a downward thrust of the thumb to the box on which they sat.

    White Fang Jack London
British Dictionary definitions for downward

downward

/ˈdaʊnwəd/
adjective
1.
descending from a higher to a lower level, condition, position, etc
2.
descending from a beginning
adverb
3.
a variant of downwards
Derived Forms
downwardly, adverb
downwardness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for downward
adv.

c.1200, from down (adv.) + -ward. Old English had aduneweard in this sense. Downwards, with adverbial genitive, had a parallel in Old English ofduneweardes.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for downward

Word Value for downward

16
17
Scrabble Words With Friends