Nearby words

  1. counselling,
  2. counsellor,
  3. counselor,
  4. counselor at law,
  5. counselor-at-law,
  6. count against,
  7. count down,
  8. count for,
  9. count in,
  10. count noses


    count coup. coup1(def 4).

Origin of count

1275–1325; (v.) Middle English counten < Anglo-French c(o)unter, Old French conter < Latin computāre to compute; (noun) Middle English counte < Anglo-French c(o)unte, Old French conte < Late Latin computus calculation, reckoning, noun derivative of computāre

Related formshalf-count·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for count down


/ (kaʊnt) /



Word Origin for count

C14: from Anglo-French counter, from Old French conter, from Latin computāre to calculate, compute


/ (kaʊnt) /


a nobleman in any of various European countries having a rank corresponding to that of a British earl
any of various officials in the late Roman Empire and under various Germanic kings in the early Middle Ages
a man who has received an honour (papal knighthood) from the Pope in recognition of good deeds, achievements, etc
Derived Formscountship, noun

Word Origin for count

C16: from Old French conte, from Late Latin comes occupant of a state office, from Latin: overseer, associate, literally: one who goes with, from com- with + īre to go

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

Word Origin and History for count down
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for count down


[ kount ]


To name or list the units of a group or collection one by one in order to determine a total.


The act of counting or calculating.
The totality of specific items in a particular sample.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with count down

count down


Count backward from any number to zero to indicate time, as in The final seconds before take off were counted down: 10, 9, 8, etc. The down in this term refers to the decreasing size of the numbers. This usage originated in connection with the firing of missiles and spacecraft and has since been broadened to such events as the roll call of states at a political convention. [c. 1950]


Make final preparations for an event, as in Hong Kong was counting down to the day when it became part of mainland China. This usage is derived from def. 1. [Late 1950s]


In addition to the idioms beginning with count

  • count against
  • count down
  • count for
  • count in
  • count noses
  • count off
  • count on
  • count one's chickens before they hatch
  • count out
  • count to ten

also see:

  • down for the count
  • every minute counts
  • out for (the count)
  • stand up and be counted
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.