Moving from a higher position to a lower one. This is the literal meaning of down and is found in many different combinations.

come down He saw a car coming down the road.
go down The Titanic went down on her maiden voyage in 1912.
move down How many tons of cargo are moved down the river every year?
pull down Pull down the lever to start extracting juice.
put down He finished the book and put it down on the table.
ram down Ram it down his throat.
touch down The plane was quickly covered in foam when it touched down.

Sitting or lying in a resting position

Move to a lower position.

bed down Passengers stranded at Heathrow were forced to bed down on the floor.
bend down He bent down to take a look at the baby.
bed down After a lovely bath I bedded down for a lovely sleep.
bow down They bowed down before the Queen.
crouch down He crouched down and looked under the bed.
doss down If you can get me a blanket I'll just doss down on the sofa.
flop down We flopped down into seats in the waiting area.
get down The police were shouting at them to get down.
keep down I had to keep my head down to avoid getting hit.
kip down Any chance of kipping down at your place?
kneel down He knelt down and began to pray.
lie down He lay down on the bed.
plump down He plumped down on the chair.
reach down I reached down and tried to grab it.
sit down He sat down at the breakfast table looking happy.
throw down He threw himself down and begged for mercy.



Some combinations of down indicate rain heavily.

beat down I could hear the rain beating down on the roof.
bucket down Rain is expected to bucket down this afternoon in the north of the country.
lash down The rain was absolutely lashing down by now and we were both getting pretty wet.
pelt down When I woke up, rain was pelting down, battering the window.
piss down You got back just in time, I reckon. It's going to piss down in a minute.
pour down You'd better take an umbrella with you, it's pouring down outside.



Phrasal verbs with down often mean reducing the quantity, quality, size, intensity, importance, and so on. For example, if you go for a walk in the summer and it's too hot you can have a rest to cool down. Cool down here means reduce your body temperature.

bring down The government is trying to bring down the rate of inflation.
calm down He was very upset about it, but he calmed down eventually.
change down You'll need to change down into second gear.
come down I'm waiting for the prices to come down. They say they're going to tumble.
cool down Let food cool down before putting it in the fridge or freezer.
count down She's counting down to her return to London over Christmas.
drag down Fierce competition is dragging down groceries prices.
dress down Dressing down allows staff to be comfortable and be themselves.
drive down Increased competition has driven down the cost of many foods.
die down The wind blew strongly for several hours but then it started to die down.
file down There are electric nail files on the market that are specifically made to file down dog's nails.
go down When interest rates go down, people and businesses are encouraged to borrow and spend more.
keep down Please keep your voice down or they will hear you.
knock down She got the owner to knock down the price.
let down We had to let down the tyres a bit to get onto the beach.
live down Jake has spent his life trying to live down his father's reputation.
mark down The dress was marked down more than 50 percent, from $125 to just 55 bucks.
narrow down They narrowed the number of suspects down to three.
play down He is trying to play down claims of financial mismanagement and vote-rigging.
push down The uncertain economic situation has pushed down the number of houses being bought.
quiet down I can't wait for the summer when things quiet down.
quieten down Can you ask the children to quieten down? They're making so much noise I can't hear myself think.
run down United were trying to run down the clock late in the second half.
sand down You just have to sand down the edges so you don't cut yourself.
shrink down In some areas, delivery times on standard items will shrink down to two or three days.
simmer down They just need a little time apart so they can let things simmer down a bit.
slow down You are driving too fast. Please slow down.
slim down Regular exercise can help you slim down.
thin down Use water to thin down the paint.
tone down This letter is too aggressive and impolite - It'll be more effective if you tone it down.
trade down Drivers are trading down to more fuel-efficient cars.
turn down When the liquid boils, turn the heat down and simmer it for 10 minutes.
water down I'm pretty sure they were watering down the drinks.
wind down They usually have a drink to wind down after a long day.


Failure, defeating, collapsing, attacking


back down My father was a man who would never back down.
bear down It's good news that the government is now bearing down on these practices.
break down Sorry I'm late. The car broke down on the way here.
bring down Another defeat in parliament would bring down the government.
climb down The government was forced to climb down.
close down The maternity centre is to close down.
come down The tree came down and hit a car.
get down Bad weather really gets me down.
go down They missed a penalty and went down by two goals to one.
gun down A prominent federal judge was gunned down on Monday.
hunt down The president has promised to hunt down those behind the attack.
let down We're relying on you to do it. You won't let us down, will you?
know down The property was devastated and had to be knocked down.
pull down They've pulled down those old building to make way for a new supermarket.
put down The police quickly put down the riots.
shut down Legal action will be taken to shut down sites that fail to comply with the law.
slap down The prime minister slapped him down over his comments on Saudi Arabia.
step down I think he should step down as chairman.
strike down Ten people have now been struck down with measles in south Wales following an outbreak.
tear down They're seeking permission to tear down the building.
turn down He was offered an excellent job but he turned it down.


Eating or drinking

bolt down She bolted down her dinner.
drink down I drank down my filling smoothie, paid the bill, and left.
force down The medication is a total nightmare, we've had to force it down her.
get down When you're sick it's hard to get food down.
gobble down He was the one who gobbled down the cookies.
gulp down Your taste buds will explode with ecstasy as you gulp down this incredibly delicious ice cream.
keep down I'm feeling a little better today. I had a little food earlier and I managed to keep it down.
slip down The wine complemented the fish perfectly and slipped down really well.
stay down A teaspoon of fluid given every few minutes may stay down better.
wash down It was a delicious hearty meal washed down with a pint of their local brew.
wolf down The kids wolfed down their food so they could go and watch telly.


Writing; on paper; with certainty

copy down He copied down the address.
get down Get the basics down by watching a short introduction video.
jot down You may need to jot down instructions to make sure that you are able to follow them accurately.
lay down The Directives lay down the hygiene conditions under which wild game meat is to be obtained, processed and inspected, in order to prevent food poisoning.
nail down Try and nail them down to a price.
note down She noted the answers down so that she could try the exercise again later in the week.
peg down We need to start pegging down the venue so we can make reservations if needed.
pin down It was always hard to pin him down to a definite answer.
take down Mrs Stevens was at the meeting, so her secretary took down my message.
write down It wasn't enough for her simply to hear new sounds or words. She had to see them written down.

Basic essentials

Separate something into pieces, parts or steps, perhaps to undersdant or deal with it better. It might also mean that we show the most important, basic or essetial parts or ideas of something. 

boil down to A lot of this boils down to lack of education.
break down Bacteria break down the animal waste to form methane gas.
come down to In the end, it will come down to money.
strip down The old apartment has been stripped down to the bare essentials at this point.



Sometimes down means the same as along.

drive down Can I drive down this road and get to the High Street?
go down They went down the road to the village.
walk down I was walking down the road when I saw him.


hose down Hose down the car, from top to bottom.
rub down He wouldn't let me rub him down with a towel.
towel down It's a good idea to towel down the dogs after a wet walk.
wash down Any waste food that is washed down the sink will add to the problem.
wipe down Make sure you wipe down the tables with a sponge and warm water.


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