Definition of decrease in English:



Pronunciation /dɪˈkriːs/
  • Make or become smaller or fewer in size, amount, intensity, or degree:

    [no object] ‘the population of the area has decreased radically’
    [with object] ‘the aisles were decreased in height’
    • ‘The longest wavelengths are in the red area, decreasing through yellow, green, blue, to violet.’
    • ‘By the time the job was done, the bedroom had decreased in area by four square metres.’
    • ‘Of course, students are still borrowing, but my advice has been that the average amount is decreasing.’
    • ‘There has even been a two per cent decrease in the number of cars torched.’
    • ‘We have seen an eighty per cent decrease in the number of firework injuries in the past two years.’
    • ‘Children from existing neighbourhoods will be affected by this catchment area decreasing.’
    • ‘The rashes decrease when the temperature subsides, but during the recurrence of fever, they reappear in a virulent form.’
    • ‘Industry decreased and the area was not as good farming country as some once thought.’
    • ‘Its height was decreased by about 6 metres and only one clock was left on the front of the building.’
    • ‘When fertility decreased, the garden would be abandoned and a new patch of land burnt for use.’
    • ‘Therefore, the wear rate of rhino teeth, in terms of crown height, may decrease exponentially with age.’
    • ‘In a few years when the amount of smokers has decreased - that is when we should ban smoking in public places.’
    • ‘Russian security unilateralism would decrease; consultation would increase.’
    • ‘Calculations carried out by the team suggest bust and hip size have decreased while waist size has expanded.’
    • ‘Due to the farm crisis production in the rural areas has decreased by 25 percent.’
    • ‘The leaping activity is higher in infested compared to non-infested fish, and is decreasing with size.’
    • ‘While employment figures continue to fall, their rate of decline has decreased.’
    • ‘Another reason why large towns and cities are generally warmer is due to decreased amounts of evaporation.’
    • ‘The tropopause can be defined as the place where the temperature stops decreasing with height and becomes constant.’
    reduce, lessen, make fewer, make less, lower, cut down/back, cut back on, cut down on, cut, curtail, contract, diminish, narrow, pare down, slim down, tone down, temper, weaken, deplete, minimize
    lessen, become less, grow less, become smaller, grow smaller, reduce, drop, diminish, decline, dwindle, contract, shrink, fall off, die down
    View synonyms


Pronunciation /ˈdiːkriːs/
  • An instance of becoming smaller or fewer:

    ‘a decrease in births’
    [mass noun] ‘the rate of decrease became greater’
    • ‘Then came the economic downturn and a sharp decrease in the numbers venturing onto the slopes.’
    • ‘In the last few decades all these countries estimated a decrease in their birth rate, but they also registered stabilization.’
    • ‘This reduction in mortality was almost entirely due to a decrease in deaths due to accidental overdose.’
    • ‘After all, a shrinking readership does not always imply a decrease in stature.’
    • ‘The total amount of money sent home dropped along with a decrease in the number of migrant workers.’
    • ‘There is a general decrease in rainfall and an increase in the range of temperatures experienced as one moves away from the coast.’
    • ‘The decrease in information mail has fallen off dramatically, to be replaced with a corresponding increase in junk mail.’
    • ‘Interest rates on banking credits are expected to fall with the decrease in the basic interest rate.’
    • ‘One in three of those polled said that a decrease in interest rates would result in a substantial increase in the number of people who would seek a bank loan.’
    • ‘The capital encountered severe drought this year due to a sharp decrease in rainfall.’
    • ‘There has been a big decrease in unemployment over the past year, with a drop of 583 since October 1999.’
    • ‘This study is so far too short-term to conclude whether this will in fact cause a decrease in mortality rates from cancer.’
    • ‘This in its turn will lead to a decrease in the rate of economic growth, stagnation and shrinking of markets.’
    • ‘The decrease in quarterly rate from 1992 onwards was seen consistently across the regions.’
    • ‘Attacks resulted in a marked decrease in growth rate and massive damage from which the tree never fully recovered.’
    • ‘Perhaps the greatest societal benefit will be a decrease in the divorce rate.’
    • ‘As for the decrease in deaths, a marked reduction in AIDS-related mortality has been observed in recent years.’
    • ‘A slowdown in the birth rate has led to a dramatic decrease in the number of younger people in the workforce.’
    • ‘The increasing occurrences of drought and an overall decrease in absolute rainfall promoted drier climates.’
    reduction, drop, lessening, lowering, decline, falling off
    letting up, slackening, downturn, cut, cutback, curtailment, diminution, contraction, shrinkage, ebb, wane, de-escalation
    dying down, abatement
    View synonyms


  • on the decrease

    • Becoming less common or widespread; decreasing:

      ‘marriage is on the decrease’
      • ‘The total investment however, has been steadily on the decrease since the economic crisis hit the country in the middle of 1997.’
      • ‘Printmakers are on the decrease, especially in this country, and she wishes to revive a demand for prints.’
      • ‘Such being the case, it is not exaggerating to say that the number of applicants for the doctoral degree is on the decrease in Korea.’
      • ‘The number of people on the unemployment register locally is on the decrease.’
      • ‘The spokesman added that their latest figures suggested the number of parking tickets being issued was on the decrease.’
      • ‘Dirgopal Mangal, says conversion is on the decrease.’
      • ‘Apart from the burglary figures, crime as a whole was on the decrease, according to Insp Jones.’
      • ‘As in several European countries, the population of the elderly is on the rise and that of children on the decrease.’
      • ‘Yet the familial act of reading is apparently on the decrease.’
      • ‘With inflation set to fall even further from an all time low of 1.9% in December for once the trend may just show the graph on the decrease rather than on an ever increasing curve.’


Late Middle English: from Old French decreis (noun), decreistre (verb), based on Latin decrescere, from de- down + crescere grow.