verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
- decatur, stephen,
- decatyl alcohol,
- decay chain,
- decay constant,
- decay series,
- decay theory,
- decay time
Origin of decay
Examples from the Web for decay
Their decay proceeded without a ready supply of oxygen, producing hydrocarbons like methane instead of oxygen-bearing molecules.
Witnesses say there were at least six bodies piled together inside this one tiled room where the air is poisonous with decay.
In the summer heat, the smell of decay was beginning to spread.In the Killing Fields of Ukraine with Children Who Saw the MH17 Horror|Anna Nemtsova|July 20, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Theaters were quickly abandoned, left to decay and sometimes destroyed.Kabul's Major Motion Picture: Cinema's Rebirth in Afghanistan|Justin Jones|April 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
To begin with there is the general indifference to the decay of democracy.
The decay of religion and the increase of superstition are among the most noteworthy of the social changes which I have seen.Seeing and Hearing|George W. E. Russell
And the decay of the presentiment must have been hastened by the failure of so many presentiments to make good.The Daughter of the Storage|William Dean Howells
It hastens the decay of vegetable matter, and the finer comminution of the earthy parts of the soil.The Elements of Agriculture|George E. Waring
Their decay had been so rapid, that scarcely anything remained but the uppers.Mad|George Manville Fenn
The decay of vegetation was popularly figured as due to the weakness of the god who produced the fertility.The Religion of Babylonia and Assyria|Morris Jastrow
- (of an atomic nucleus) to undergo radioactive disintegration
- (of an elementary particle) to transform into two or more different elementary particles
- See radioactive decay
- a spontaneous transformation of an elementary particle into two or more different particles
- of an excited atom or molecule, losing energy by the spontaneous emission of photons
Word Origin for decay
late 15c., "to decrease," from Anglo-French decair, Old North French decair (Old French decheoir, 12c., Modern French déchoir) "to fall, set (of the sun), weaken, decline, decay," from Vulgar Latin *decadere "to fall off," from de- (see de-) + Latin cadere "to fall" (see case (n.1)). Meaning "decline, deteriorate" is c.1500; that of "to decompose, rot" is from 1570s. Related: Decayed; decaying.
mid-15c., "deterioration, decline in value," from decay (v.). Meaning "gradual decrease in radioactivity" is from 1897.