- 1 [intransitive] (rather formal) to become smaller, fewer, weaker, etc. Support for the party continues to decline. The number of tourists to the resort declined by 10% last year. Her health was declining rapidly.
- 2[intransitive, transitive] (formal) to refuse politely to accept or to do something synonym refuse1 I offered to give them a lift but they declined. decline something to decline an offer/invitation She declined a second glass of wine and called for a taxi. decline to do something Their spokesman declined to comment on the allegations.
- 3[intransitive, transitive] decline (something) (grammar) if a noun, an adjective or a pronoun declines, it has different forms according to whether it is the subject or the object of a verb, whether it is in the singular or plural, etc. When you decline a noun, etc., you list these forms. See related entries: Grammar compare conjugate Word Origin late Middle English: from Old French decliner, from Latin declinare
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BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪn//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪn//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they decline
BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪn//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪn//he / she / it declines
BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪnz//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪnz//past simple declined
BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪnd//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪnd//past participle declined
BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪnd//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪnd//-ing form declining
BrE BrE//dɪˈklaɪnɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈklaɪnɪŋ//Grammar