[ keyv-in ]
See synonyms for cave-in on
  1. a collapse, as of anything hollow: the worst cave-in in the history of mining.

  2. a place or site of such a collapse.

  1. submission to something or someone previously opposed or resisted: His cave-in to such unreasonable demands shocked us.

Origin of cave-in

First recorded in 1700–10; noun use of verb phrase cave in Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

British Dictionary definitions for cave in

cave in

verb(intr, adverb)
  1. to collapse; subside

  2. informal to yield completely, esp under pressure

  1. the sudden collapse of a roof, piece of ground, etc, into a hollow beneath it; subsidence

  2. the site of such a collapse, as at a mine or tunnel

  1. informal an instance of yielding completely, esp under pressure

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with cave-in


Fall in, collapse, as in The earthquake made the walls cave in. [Early 1700s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.