downfall

[ doun-fawl ]
/ ˈdaʊnˌfɔl /

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.

Origin of downfall

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at down1, fall
Related formsdown·fall·en, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples 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

Word Origin and History for downfall

downfall


n.

"ruin, fall from high condition," c.1300, from down (adv.) + fall (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper