downbeat

[ doun-beet ]
/ ˈdaʊnˌbit /

noun Music.

the downward stroke of a conductor's arm or baton indicating the first or accented beat of a measure.
the first beat of a measure.

adjective

gloomy or depressing; pessimistic: Hollywood movies seldom have downbeat endings.

QUIZZES

HEED THE VOX POPULI, AND TAKE THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!

Test your memory on these verbal firecrackers from the week of June 29 to July 5!
Question 1 of 7
anchorite

Origin of downbeat

1875–80; down1 + beat (noun)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for downbeat

British Dictionary definitions for downbeat

downbeat
/ (ˈdaʊnˌbiːt) /

noun

music the first beat of a bar or the downward gesture of a conductor's baton indicating thisCompare upbeat

adjective

informal depressed; gloomy
informal relaxed; unemphatic
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