Dictionary.com

downfall

[ doun-fawl ]
/ ˈdaʊnˌfɔl /
Save This Word!

noun

descent to a lower position or standing; overthrow; ruin.
something causing ruin, failure, etc.: Liquor was his downfall.
a fall, as of rain, snow, or the like, often sudden or heavy.
a trap using a falling weight for killing, injuring, or imprisoning the prey.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON “THEIR,” “THERE,” AND “THEY’RE”

Are you aware how often people swap around “their,” “there,” and “they’re”? Prove you have more than a fair grasp over these commonly confused words.
Question 1 of 7
Which one of these commonly confused words can act as an adverb or a pronoun?

Origin of downfall

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at down1, fall

OTHER WORDS FROM downfall

downfallen, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for downfall

British Dictionary definitions for downfall

downfall
/ (ˈdaʊnˌfɔːl) /

noun

a sudden loss of position, health, or reputation
a fall of rain, snow, etc, esp a sudden heavy one
another word for deadfall
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
See Today's Synonym