- a depressant or sedative drug, especially a barbiturate.
- a depressing experience, person, or situation.
Examples from the Web for downer
France does not like to see it described as an AIDS documentary, which inevitably sounds like something of a downer.New Documentary ‘How to Survive a Plague’ Details ACT UP’s Heroic Role in AIDS Battle|Stephen Farber|September 26, 2012|DAILY BEAST
Few political watchers thought Romney would wrap anything up Tuesday, but the returns must still have come as a bit of a downer.
Seemingly, some of the cast members learned how to spot the STD, which appears to be quite the downer.
That's not to send a message that next season's going to be a downer, because it won't be.
It has led, a downer for us frequent fliers, to yet another James Patterson bestseller.
Downer's Cleaning and Polishing Oil for bright metals, is the oldest and best in the market.
Make him lively, cook him; tell him who taught you; a downer to him, and I'll marry you to-morrow!'The Adventures of Harry Richmond, Complete|George Meredith
Here was a great mortgage on the Downer farm, that the Eastmans had partly cut into city lots.Hope Mills|Amanda M. Douglas
Last fall I potted some of the Downer, and in the winter grew them in the house.
Some berries shine, the Downer glows as if there were a red bloom upon it.
British Dictionary definitions for downer
Word Origin and History for downer
1966 in sense of "barbiturate;" 1970 in sense of "depressing person;" agent noun from down (v.).