verb (used with object)

to treat or speak of (something) so as to reduce emphasis on its importance, value, strength, etc.: The press has downplayed the president's role in the negotiations.

Origin of downplay

1950–55; down1 + play, from verb phrase play down Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for downplay

lessen, soften, whitewash, devalue, deemphasize

Examples from the Web for downplay

Contemporary Examples of downplay

British Dictionary definitions for downplay



(tr) to play down; make little of
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 downplay

"de-emphasize," 1968, from down (adv.) + play (v.). Related: Downplayed; downplaying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper