[ doun-werd ]
See synonyms for downward on
  1. Also downwards. from a higher to a lower place or condition.

  2. down from a source or beginning: As the river flows downward, it widens.

  1. from a past time, predecessor, or ancestor: The estate was handed downward from generation to generation.

  1. moving or tending to a lower place or condition.

  2. descending from a source or beginning.

Origin of downward

1150–1200; Middle English dounward, aphetic variant of adounward,Old English adūnweard.See down1, -ward

Other words from downward

  • down·ward·ly, adverb
  • down·ward·ness, noun

Words Nearby downward Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use downward in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for downward


/ (ˈdaʊnwəd) /

  1. descending from a higher to a lower level, condition, position, etc

  2. descending from a beginning

  1. a variant of downwards

Derived forms of downward

  • downwardly, adverb
  • downwardness, noun

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