definitions
  • synonyms

run-down

[ ruhn-doun ]
/ ˈrʌnˈdaʊn /
|
SEE MORE SYNONYMS FOR run-down ON THESAURUS.COM

adjective

fatigued; weary; exhausted.
in a state of poor health: He was in a run-down condition from months of overwork.
in neglected condition; fallen into disrepair: a run-down house.
(of a spring-operated device) not running because it is unwound.

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RELATED WORDS

knock, belittle, criticize, decry, defame, denigrate, depreciate, derogate, detract, diminish, disparage, revile, vilify, dispraise

Nearby words

run to form, run to seed, run up, run wild, run with, run-down, run-flat, run-in, run-of-paper, run-of-the-mill, run-of-the-mine

Origin of run-down

First recorded in 1675–85; adj. use of verb phrase run down
SYNONYMS FOR run-down
3 seedy, tacky, shabby, deteriorated.

Definition for run down (2 of 2)

Origin of run

before 900; (v.) Middle English rinnen, rennen, partly < Old Norse rinna, renna, partly continuing Old English rinnan; cognate with German rinnen; form run orig. past participle, later extended to present tense; (noun and adj.) derivative of the v.
Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for run down (1 of 2)

run down


verb (mainly adverb)

adjective run-down

tired; exhausted
worn-out, shabby, or dilapidated

noun rundown

British Dictionary definitions for run down (2 of 2)

run

/ (rʌn) /

verb runs, running, ran or run

noun

Word Origin for run

Old English runnen, past participle of (ge) rinnan; related to Old Frisian, Old Norse rinna, Old Saxon, Gothic, Old High German rinnan
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

Idioms and Phrases with run down (1 of 2)

run down


1

Stop because of lack of power or force, as in The alarm clock finally ran down. [Mid-1700s]

2

Make or be tired, cause to decline or be declined in health or vigor, as in His long illness ran him down, leaving him with no energy, or After that huge assignment his strength ran down. [First half of 1800s]

3

Collide with and knock over, as in The speeding motorist ran down a pedestrian. [Second half of 1500s]

4

Chase and capture, as in Police detectives ran down the suspects. [Second half of 1600s]

5

Trace the source of, as in She ran down all the references at the library.

6

Disparage, as in Don't run him down, he's a talented actor. [Second half of 1600s] Also see put down, def. 4.

7

Also, run one's eyes over. Look over, review, as in Let's run down the membership list again and see if we can pick a delegate, or She ran her eyes over the crowd, looking for her husband.

8

In baseball, tag out a runner between bases, as in We might have won but in the last inning they ran down two of our runners.

Idioms and Phrases with run down (2 of 2)

run


In addition to the idioms beginning with run

  • run across
  • run a fever
  • run afoul of
  • run after
  • run against
  • run along
  • run amok
  • run an errand
  • run a risk
  • run around
  • run around in circles
  • run around like a chicken
  • run around with
  • run a temperature
  • run a tight ship
  • run away
  • run away with
  • run by someone
  • run circles around
  • run counter to
  • run down
  • run dry
  • run for it
  • run for one's money, a
  • run foul
  • run high
  • run in
  • run in place
  • run interference
  • run in the blood
  • run into
  • run into a stone wall
  • run into the ground
  • run its course
  • run like clockwork
  • running on empty
  • running start
  • run off
  • run off at the mouth
  • run off with
  • run of luck
  • run of the mill
  • run on
  • run one ragged
  • run one's eyes over
  • run one's head against the wall
  • run one's own show
  • run out
  • run out of
  • run out on
  • run over
  • run rings around
  • run riot
  • run scared
  • run short
  • run someone in
  • run someone off his or her feet
  • run the gamut
  • run the gauntlet
  • run the show
  • run through
  • run to
  • run to earth
  • run to form
  • run to seed
  • run up
  • run wild
  • run with

also see:

  • beat (run) one's head against the wall
  • cut and run
  • dry run
  • eat and run
  • end run
  • go (run) around in circles
  • great minds (run in the same channel)
  • home run
  • in the long run
  • like clockwork, run
  • make a break (run) for
  • make one's blood run cold
  • (run) off someone's feet
  • on the run
  • still waters run deep
  • tight ship, run a
  • well's run dry

Also see underrunning.

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