Definition of dwindle in English:



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  • Diminish gradually in size, amount, or strength.

    ‘traffic has dwindled to a trickle’
    • ‘It will not be long before the enemy must retreat into a continuous perimeter, as his manpower dwindles to the point where a mobile defense is no longer viable.’
    • ‘As her 63 percent lead dwindles to a still respectable 56 or 55 percent next summer, she and her campaign advisers may suddenly feel the need to do something.’
    • ‘As communities dwindled and merged, Shaker villages were gradually sold off.’
    • ‘The premiums continue to rise each year while the amount of coverage seems to dwindle.’
    • ‘The price will probably keep going up as supply slowly dwindles.’
    • ‘Though the amount of press it has seen has dwindled as of late, the show is still as exciting as ever.’
    • ‘Though she was many miles away, he felt her aura gradually dim and dwindle until it faded completely away…’
    • ‘North Sea gas supplies are gradually dwindling, with much of the infrastructure now at a ripe old age.’
    • ‘That shout had a different tone to it; towards the end of his name, her voice seemed to dwindle, fading.’
    • ‘He said the farm's workforce was dwindling, with only four full-time employees.’
    • ‘There is nothing wrong with the people - it is the investment which has gradually dwindled.’
    • ‘There are about 390 members spread far and wide but active membership in York is much smaller and dwindling.’
    • ‘Is it not up to the property owner to see for himself that his real estate is dwindling in value?’
    • ‘As government funding dwindles and the competition for charitable donations heats up, several facilities have turned to corporations and exchanged naming rights for cash.’
    • ‘As the world's oil resources continue to dwindle, the competition to find an alternative fuel increases in intensity.’
    • ‘As the teams dwindle in size, they will merge into one new tribe name Barramundi.’
    • ‘The island is one of Scotland's biggest tourist magnets in the summer, but business dwindles so much in the winter that the island's two hotels and most of its guest houses have to close.’
    • ‘As he strummed the song, with its hushed chorus that dwindles into a whisper by the end, the crowd knew it was one of those special cliched moments.’
    • ‘Love fades and dwindles in the hurly-burly of life.’
    • ‘Her strength dwindled as four men grasped hold of her and dragged her away.’
    diminish, decrease, reduce, get smaller, become smaller, grow smaller, become less, grow less, lessen, wane, contract, shrink, fall off, taper off, tail off, drop, fall, go down, sink, slump, plummet
    decline, degenerate, deteriorate, fail, ebb, wane, sink, slip, slide, go downhill, go to rack and ruin, decay, wither, fade, fade away
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Late 16th century: frequentative of Scots and dialect dwine ‘fade away’, from Old English dwīnan, of Germanic origin; related to Middle Dutch dwīnen and Old Norse dvína.