[ drop ]
See synonyms for: dropdroppeddroppingdrops on Thesaurus.com

  1. a small quantity of liquid that falls or is produced in a more or less spherical mass; a liquid globule:The steam condensed and formed drops of water on the window.

  2. the quantity contained in a globule or bead of liquid that forms or falls:The instructions say to place two drops of iodine on the piece of potato.

  1. a very small quantity of liquid compared to a standard or typical portion: I'll have a little more tea, just a drop.

  2. a minute quantity of anything: not even a drop of mercy.

  3. Usually drops .

    • liquid medicine given in a dose or form of globules from a medicine dropper.

    • a solution for dilating the pupils of the eyes, administered to the eyes in globules by a medicine dropper.

  4. a limited amount of an alcoholic beverage: He occasionally takes a drop after dinner.

  5. an act or instance of dropping; fall; descent.

  6. the distance or depth to which anything drops: a ten-foot drop to the ground.

  7. a steep slope: a short drop to the lake.

  8. a decline in amount, degree, quality, value, etc.: a drop in prices.

  9. a small, usually spherical, piece of candy; lozenge: a lemon drop.

  10. a central depository where items are left or transmitted: a mail drop.

  11. a predesignated place where secret letters or packages can be left to be picked up by another person without attracting attention, as in espionage or drug dealing.

  12. something resembling or likened to a liquid globule, as certain ornaments, a spherical earring, etc.

  13. a descent by parachute.

  14. an instance of dropping supplies by parachute or an amount of supplies so dropped.

  15. something that drops or is used for dropping.

  16. a group of persons dropped by parachute, as the personnel dropped by parachute during one military action.

  17. Theater.

  18. a slit or opening into which something can be dropped, as in a mailbox.

  19. (in a casino) the income from the sale of chips.

  20. Informal. music, software, sneakers, or other highly anticipated consumer products newly released to the public, or the release itself of such an item:Her latest music video drop created a lot of buzz.We don’t know for certain why the drop was postponed.

  21. Also called dropped i·tem . (in a video game) an item acquired by a player character from a defeated nonplayer character: The mobs in this zone have pretty mediocre drops.

  22. Informal. (in EDM and other dance music)

    • Also called beat drop . a point of release in a song when, after a buildup of tension during which pitch and pace increase and the bass diminishes or disappears, the bass beat resumes.

    • a climactic section of a song which begins with the resumption of the bass beat after a buildup section during which the bass has receded or diminished.

  23. a small flag, usually of enameled metal, that is a visual indicator in an annunciator or other device meant to signal or alert.

  24. Furniture. an applied ornament resembling a pendant.

  25. Architecture. gutta (def. 2).

  26. Nautical. the vertical dimension amidships of any sail that is bent to a standing yard.: Compare hoist (def. 6a).

  27. Also called drop pan·el . (in reinforced-concrete-slab construction) a thickened portion of the ceiling around a column head.

  28. Horology. the free motion of an escape wheel between successive checks by the pallet.

  29. the newborn young of an animal.

verb (used without object),dropped or (Archaic) dropt, drop·ping.
  1. to fall in globules or small portions, as water or other liquid: Rain drops from the clouds.

  2. to fall vertically; have an abrupt descent.

  1. to sink or fall to the ground, floor, or bottom as if inanimate.

  2. to fall lower in condition, degree, value, etc.; diminish or lessen; sink: The prices dropped sharply.

  3. to come to an end; cease; lapse: There the matter dropped.

  4. to fall or move to a position that is lower, farther back, inferior, etc.: to drop back in line;to drop to the rear.

  5. to withdraw; quit (often followed by out or from): to drop out of a race;to drop from a game.

  6. to pass or enter without effort into some condition, activity, or the like: to drop into sleep;to drop into a habit.

  7. to make an unexpected or unannounced stop at a place; pay an informal visit or call (usually followed by in, by, or over): Since we're in the neighborhood, why don't we drop in at my brother's?

  8. to cease to appear or be seen; vanish: to drop from sight or notice.

  9. to fall wounded, dead, etc.: A thousand men dropped in the battle.

  10. to squat or crouch, as a dog at the sight of game.

  11. to move gently, as carried by the tide or a light wind (usually followed by down).

  12. Informal. (of consumer products) to be released to the public, sometimes at an announced time or as a limited edition to stoke interest; launch: When the app dropped, I decided to give it a test run.New patterns and designs drop every six weeks, ensuring their bamboo baby clothes remain a hot ticket.

verb (used with object),dropped or (Archaic) dropt, drop·ping.
  1. to let fall in drops or small portions: to drop lemon juice into tea.

  2. to let or cause to fall.

  1. to cause or allow to sink to a lower position.

  2. to cause to decrease in value, amount, quality, etc.; reduce.

  3. to utter or express casually or incidentally: to drop a hint.

  4. to write and send: Drop me a note.

  5. to bring to the ground by a blow or shot.

  6. to set down or unload, as from a ship, car, etc. (often followed by off): Drop me at the corner.

  7. to omit (a letter or syllable) in pronunciation or writing: He dropped his h's.

  8. to lower (the voice) in pitch or loudness.

  9. to cease to keep up or have to do with: I dropped the subject.Will you drop your old friends if you win the lottery?

  10. to cease to employ, admit as a member, or include, as on a list; dismiss: to drop an employee from the payroll;to drop three members of the club who have not paid their dues.

  11. to withdraw or cease to pursue: The police dropped the charges against the suspect.

  12. Sports.

    • to throw, shoot, hit, kick, or roll (a ball, puck, etc.) through or into a basket, hole, or other goal: He dropped the ball through the basket for two points.

    • to lose (a game or contest):They dropped two games in a row and were eliminated from the tournament.

  13. Football.

    • to drop-kick (a ball).

    • to score with a drop kick.

  14. (of animals) to give birth to: The cat dropped a litter of six kittens.

  15. to parachute (persons, supplies, etc.): The Marines dropped 300 combat troops into the jungle battlefield.

  16. to lengthen by lowering or letting out: to drop the hem of a skirt.

  17. to lower (the wheels) into position for landing an airplane.

  18. Informal. to release (music, software, sneakers, etc.) to the public; launch: She dropped her second album in October.

  19. Informal. to spend or lose (money) in an extravagant or wasteful way: He thought nothing of dropping $100 on a tie.

  20. Slang. to take (especially an illicit drug) by swallowing; ingest: Did you know that your uncle dropped acid in college?

  21. Nautical. to pass out of sight of; outdistance.

  22. Cooking. to poach (an egg).

Verb Phrases
  1. drop behind, to fall short of the required pace or progress: Her long illness caused her to drop behind the rest of the class.

  2. drop off,

    • to fall asleep.

    • to decrease; decline: Sales have dropped off drastically.

  1. drop out,

    • to withdraw from being a member or participant: to drop out of a club;to drop out of society and become a wanderer.

    • to stop attending school or college.

Idioms about drop

  1. at the drop of a hat, at the slightest provocation or without delay: He's ready to fight at the drop of a hat.

  2. drop dead, (used as an expression of contempt, disgust, impatience, etc.): If that's the way you feel about it, drop dead!

  1. drop in the bucket. bucket (def. 13).

  2. get / have the drop on,

    • to aim and be ready to shoot a gun at an antagonist before the other person's gun can be drawn.

    • to get or have at a disadvantage.

Origin of drop

First recorded before 1000; Middle English noun drop(e) “drop of liquid,” Old English dropa; the verb is derived from the noun; akin to drip, droop

Other words from drop

  • drop·like, adjective
  • un·dropped, adjective

Words Nearby drop

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use drop in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for drop


/ (drɒp) /

  1. a small quantity of liquid that forms or falls in a spherical or pear-shaped mass; globule

  2. a very small quantity of liquid

  1. a very small quantity of anything

  2. something resembling a drop in shape or size, such as a decorative pendant or small sweet

  3. the act or an instance of falling; descent

  4. a decrease in amount or value; slump: a drop in prices

  5. the vertical distance that anything may fall

  6. a steep or sheer incline or slope

  7. short for fruit drop

  8. the act of unloading troops, equipment, or supplies by parachute

  9. (in cable television) a short spur from a trunk cable that feeds signals to an individual house

  10. theatre See drop curtain

  11. another word for trap door, gallows

  12. mainly US and Canadian a slot or aperture through which an object can be dropped to fall into a receptacle

  13. nautical the midships height of a sail bent to a fixed yard: Compare hoist (def. 6a)

  14. Australian cricket slang a fall of the wicket: he came in at first drop

  15. a drop in the bucket or a drop in the ocean an amount very small in relation to what is needed or desired

  16. at the drop of a hat without hesitation or delay

  17. have had a drop too much to be drunk

  18. have the drop on someone US and NZ to have the advantage over someone

verbdrops, dropping or dropped
  1. (of liquids) to fall or allow to fall in globules

  2. to fall or allow to fall vertically

  1. (tr) to allow to fall by letting go of

  2. to sink or fall or cause to sink or fall to the ground, as from a blow, wound, shot, weariness, etc

  3. (intr; foll by back, behind, etc) to fall, move, or go in a specified manner, direction, etc

  4. (intr; foll by in, by, etc) informal to pay a casual visit (to)

  5. to decrease or cause to decrease in amount or value: the cost of living never drops

  6. to sink or cause to sink to a lower position, as on a scale

  7. to make or become less in strength, volume, etc

  8. (intr) to sink or decline in health or condition

  9. (intr sometimes foll by into) to pass easily into a state or condition: to drop into a habit

  10. (intr) to move along gently as with a current of water or air

  11. (tr) to allow to pass casually in conversation: to drop a hint

  12. (tr) to leave out (a word or letter)

  13. (tr) to set down or unload (passengers or goods)

  14. (tr) to send or post: drop me a line/text/email

  15. (tr) to discontinue; terminate: let's drop the matter

  16. (tr) to cease to associate or have to do with

  17. (tr) slang, mainly US to cease to employ: he was dropped from his job

  18. (tr; sometimes foll by in, off, etc) informal to leave or deposit, esp at a specified place

  19. (of animals) to give birth to (offspring)

  20. slang, mainly US and Canadian to lose (money), esp when gambling

  21. (tr) to lengthen (a hem, etc)

  22. (tr) to unload (troops, equipment, or supplies) by parachute

  23. (tr) nautical to leave behind; sail out of sight of

  24. (tr) sport to omit (a player) from a team

  25. (tr) to lose (a score, game, or contest): the champion dropped his first service game

  26. (tr) sport to hit or throw (a ball) into a goal: he dropped a 30 foot putt

  27. (tr) to hit (a ball) with a drop shot

  28. drop astern nautical to fall back to the stern (of another vessel)

  29. (tr) motor racing slang to spin (the car) and (usually) crash out of the race

  30. (tr) slang to swallow (a drug, esp a barbiturate or LSD)

  31. drop dead! slang an exclamation of contempt

noun, verb
  1. rugby short for drop kick or drop-kick

Origin of drop

Old English dropian; related to Old High German triofan to drip

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with drop


In addition to the idioms beginning with drop

  • drop a bombshell
  • drop a brick
  • drop a dime
  • drop a line
  • drop back
  • drop behind
  • drop by
  • drop dead
  • drop in one's tracks
  • drop in someone's lap
  • drop in the bucket
  • drop like a hot potato
  • drop like flies
  • drop names
  • drop off
  • drop out
  • drop the ball

also see:

  • at the drop of a hat
  • bottom drops out of
  • get the drop on
  • hear a pin drop
  • let drop
  • wait for the other shoe to drop

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.