verb (used without object)

to sag, sink, bend, or hang down, as from weakness, exhaustion, or lack of support.
to fall into a state of physical weakness; flag; fail.
to lose spirit or courage.
to descend, as the sun; sink.

verb (used with object)

to let sink or drop: an eagle drooping its wings.


a sagging, sinking, bending, or hanging down, as from weakness, exhaustion, or lack of support.

Origin of droop

1300–50; Middle English drupen, drowpen < Old Norse drūpa; akin to drop
Related formsdroop·ing·ly, adverbre·droop, verb (used without object)un·droop·ing, adjective

Synonyms for droop

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for drooping

Historical Examples of drooping

  • "It clears Alan," he said, seeking furtively for a look into the drooping face.


    W. A. Fraser

  • Life is a hearty and vigorous movement to them, not a drooping slouch.

  • To which she replied, drooping her head again, that she shouldn't dance that night.

    The Cavalier

    George Washington Cable

  • He was so acute that he must be aware of the drooping of their intimacy.

    A Spirit in Prison

    Robert Hichens

  • This was Weaver speaking, a small, wiry man with a drooping moustache.

    Old Man Curry

    Charles E. (Charles Emmett) Van Loan

British Dictionary definitions for drooping



to sag or allow to sag, as from weakness or exhaustion; hang down; sink
(intr) to be overcome by weariness; languish; flag
(intr) to lose courage; become dejected


the act or state of drooping
Derived Formsdrooping, adjectivedroopingly, adverb

Word Origin for droop

C13: from Old Norse drūpa; see drop
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 drooping



early 13c., from Old Norse drupa "to drop, sink, hang (the head)," from Proto-Germanic *drup-, from PIE *dhreu-, related to Old English dropian "to drop" (see drip). Related: Drooped; drooping. As a noun, from 1640s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper