Definition of drop in English:

drop

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1Let or make (something) fall vertically.

    ‘the fire was caused by someone dropping a lighted cigarette’
    ‘they dropped bombs on London during the raid’
    • ‘Over the next 11 days, French and US warplanes dropped 3,250 bombs.’
    • ‘He wades into the water and of course falls over and drops his walking stick.’
    • ‘He drops the phone and falls back to the floor, shaking.’
    • ‘He heard something snap and the student fell, dropping the crate.’
    • ‘She rushed forward almost dropping the torch as she fell to her knees on the ground in front of him.’
    • ‘Mia fell back screaming and dropping the candle.’
    • ‘When the plane landed back at Heathrow, one of the six crates was found to be missing, and during unloading, a large cardboard box was dropped and the lid fell off.’
    • ‘I dropped my bag next to my usual seat in the back and sat down.’
    • ‘A snap was heard as a bag was dropped to the floor.’
    • ‘Investigations by police and fire officers concluded that one of them had fallen asleep and dropped a lit cigarette end.’
    • ‘The BBC reports that the bomb was mistakenly dropped by a U.S. warplane.’
    • ‘Vincent fell to the ground, dropping his books and falling to a crouched position.’
    • ‘He drops the cigarette, falling to his knees in front of her, and pressing her hand against his cheek.’
    • ‘Ben fell to the floor dropping his bread and juice.’
    • ‘Once I see that the danger is gone, I drop my gun and fall over, clasping my leg.’
    • ‘He dropped his bag next to the coat rack by the front door.’
    • ‘He drops his sword and falls to the ground in front of the doorway.’
    • ‘She fell pretty hard, dropping a plate, and banging her head on the ground.’
    • ‘Did they drop thousands of bombs on largely vacated enemy territory?’
    • ‘The fire had started when she fell asleep and dropped her cigarette.’
    put, place, rest, deposit, set, set down, lay, leave, settle, shove, stick, position, station
    let fall, fail to hold, lose one's grip on
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Deliver (supplies or troops) by parachute.
      ‘the airlift dropped food into the camp’
      • ‘He is saying that he will drop food and medical supplies.’
      • ‘Clearing weather the following day enabled planes to drop supplies.’
      • ‘A legend held by the Red Army told of soldiers who were dropped from a low flying plane without parachutes as they were targeted at a large snow-bank!’
      • ‘Only on rare occasions would an entire Brigade be dropped for an assault upon one objective.’
      • ‘When an Australian airforce plane did finally fly over the area, it dropped no relief supplies.’
      • ‘We dropped the Parachute Regiment into Arnhem and also towed gliders over.’
      • ‘The troops would be dropped at a site seven miles away, losing any element of surprise.’
      • ‘Their method was to drop troops ahead of the main advancing forces to seize major targets and maximise the element of surprise.’
      • ‘To date, the US air force has dropped 1,550,000 food packages over the country.’
      • ‘The helicopters dropped relief supplies into parts of the hard-hit province virtually cut off from the rest of the world.’
      • ‘The Germans have to fly increasingly further with fewer aircraft and landing fields to drop supplies.’
      • ‘Maybe the bombers should drop supplies of aid technical and other support to meet the needs of the Afghans.’
      • ‘At the same time, many containers with relief supplies were dropped on deserted or mined areas.’
      • ‘Rescue planes soon found the bomber and its crew and dropped further supplies.’
      • ‘The organisation bitterly resented the fact that food parcels were being dropped at the same time as bombs.’
      • ‘While the Indian Air Force kept dropping food and medical supplies, it is the fishermen who've kept the death toll as low as it is.’
      • ‘They moved into position and prepared to drop troops.’
      • ‘Couldn't they airlift food and water and drop it by parachute or helicopter to some dry areas?’
    2. 1.2Rugby Score (a goal) by a drop kick.
      • ‘England have had a hard time of it since Wilkinson dropped the goal which won them the World Cup in Sydney in November.’
      • ‘A rare Hull breakaway five minutes from time set up the position for Richard Whiting to drop a crucial field goal.’
      • ‘From the ruck Conor Mahon whipped the ball to Canavan to drop an excellent goal.’
      • ‘To most of the nation, of course, the fly-half who dropped that goal way back in the mists of 2003 will never have anything to prove.’
      • ‘The second half saw Bolton under the cosh as Heaton Moor scored a second try and their stand off dropped a goal from 50 metres to level the scores.’
    3. 1.3 (of an animal, especially a mare, cow, or ewe) give birth to (young)
      • ‘This species of hartebeest has its young in the late dry season, some antelope prefer to drop their young during the first rains.’
      • ‘The must ox drops its young generally in April.’
      • ‘They were four hours east of Sterling, when Fly dropped her first pup.’
      • ‘She dropped her first litter of pups in September of 2003.’
      • ‘If you are worried that she is about to drop her kittens, get a box, put several blankets in there and place her on it.’
    4. 1.4informal Take (a drug, especially LSD) orally.
      ‘he dropped a lot of acid in the Sixties’
      • ‘That first night, the two get drunk, smoke weed, and drop some ecstasy.’
      • ‘Ellis would frequently drop acid on off days and weekends.’
      • ‘The notorious acid flashback (where a person will trip out long after the last time they dropped a tab) happens when the body uses some of these fat reserves, thus releasing L.S.D. into the bloodstream.’
      • ‘Before I had dropped LSD for the first time, I didn't understand the neck thing.’
      • ‘The last time I'd been in Hoch, ironically enough, we had dropped acid and gone to a showing of Fantasia.’
  • 2[no object] Fall vertically.

    ‘the spoon dropped with a clatter from her hand’
    • ‘He snapped up, staring at me with his eyes wide and his jaw nearly dropping to the ground.’
    • ‘Beneath the words there is a powerful smear of black paint, with drip lines dropping from it.’
    • ‘A pencil dropped, clattering to the floor in the silent room and I woke up suddenly.’
    • ‘When this edition of the book dropped through the letterbox, I was mildly intrigued.’
    • ‘As you begin to get drowsy, the spoon will drop to the floor, hitting the plate, waking you up.’
    • ‘My spoon dropped clumsily from my hand.’
    • ‘There was blood leaking out, dropping onto his chin.’
    • ‘There was a loud click followed by a snap, and the manacle at his wrist fell open, dropping heavily into his lap.’
    • ‘She had just let the tears fall softly, dropping onto her grey skirt.’
    • ‘But then a leaflet from my Conservative candidate dropped through the letterbox.’
    • ‘Three more petals fell out and dropped to the floor, making thirteen petals in all.’
    • ‘Drops of fresh blood were slowly dropping from it, falling to the floor, deadly, slowly, silently.’
    • ‘Our jaws nearly drop to the floor in shock.’
    • ‘The ball dropped from a height but boomed wide of the upright.’
    • ‘It ran the length of the table and dropped with a gentle plop and rattle into the corner pocket.’
    • ‘A thrust and twist through its chest, and it fell limp, the daggers clattering as they dropped from its hands.’
    • ‘She stuffed the chip bag into the wrong spot in the pantry, and it fell out and dropped to the floor.’
    • ‘Her eyes widened, jaw nearly dropping to the floor.’
    • ‘Sidroc opened his mouth and the knife dropped with a clatter to the stone floor.’
    • ‘Sebastian's subsequent survival was another aerial spectacle as his boat dropped vertically to the stage in stormy lighting.’
    drip, fall in drops, fall, dribble, trickle, drizzle, flow, run, plop, leak
    fall, come down, go down, descend, sink
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 (of a person) allow oneself to fall; let oneself down without jumping.
      ‘they escaped by climbing out of the window and dropping to the ground’
      • ‘It's as though I'm dropping from a great height at high speed.’
      • ‘And with that he let himself drop.’
      • ‘Wordlessly, she stands up and, doesn't drop, but jumps off going further than she should.’
      • ‘She then dropped to the ground, and ran towards a gate, knowing the guards aren't paying attention.’
      • ‘Without injury, I dropped and landed, and Fraust reappeared from the shadows.’
      • ‘The crews grabbed them from the first floor of their terraced home in Prestwich after the family dropped on to the roof of their bay windows.’
      • ‘I jumped, or dropped, whichever sounds more dignified, off the pipe.’
      • ‘Finally, out of the pine tree, a figure dropped to the ground, landing on its hands and knees.’
      • ‘Fins on, reg in, I lowered myself into the clear liquid of the Blue Hole and dropped through the vertical cavern to fin out into the iridescent blue.’
      • ‘Both guards instinctively dropped to the ground and rolled towards the walls.’
      • ‘The big tree rustled and a guy dropped down to the ground right in front of us.’
      • ‘The North West Air Ambulance was scrambled and was able to land on the beach just metres from where the boy had dropped.’
    2. 2.2 (of a person or animal) sink to or toward the ground.
      ‘he dropped to his knees in the mud’
      • ‘At the shot, the buck dropped to the ground but was up again moving away with no flash of the white tail to be seen.’
      • ‘Then its head sunk down and the beast simply dropped to the ground, fast asleep.’
      • ‘Was that the sound of 100 people dropping to the floor in a faint?’
      • ‘When Charlie walked into the auto shop that day he almost dropped to his knees.’
      • ‘He stared at him tentatively, dazed, then dropped back to the ground cross-legged.’
      • ‘Not trusting herself to necessarily remain on top of the cliff standing, she dropped to her stomach and slithered toward the edge of the cliff.’
      • ‘The game was marred by numerous stoppages due to injuries and it was inevitable that players would drop to the ground with cramp after the action extended into a period of extra time.’
      • ‘She had simply dropped to the ground where she'd been standing.’
      • ‘James groaned from the ground and Andy dropped to her knees to help him.’
      • ‘He dropped into a crouch beside the dog's owner and opened the oxygen case.’
      • ‘They all dropped to the ground, burying their heads under their arms.’
      • ‘When the sirens come on, all citizens should drop to the ground and place their hands behind their backs.’
      • ‘When a few minutes had passed, he dropped into a crouch.’
      • ‘The event kicked off with Rourke running away from the assembled hacks towards the sea, dropping to his knees and engaging in what appeared to be a silent prayer.’
      • ‘The man dropped to the ground, trying unsuccessfully to move his legs.’
      • ‘Confused, I nevertheless dropped to the floor, scooting away from the window.’
      • ‘The soldiers dropped to the ground, weapons drawn, firing back with little or no cover.’
      • ‘I didn't know who had killed them, but the two figures dropped to the ground a fraction of a second after we started shooting.’
      • ‘Eric dropped to the ground and fired from the prone position, sweeping left and right with the firing gun.’
      • ‘A cry rang amongst the men and one man dropped to the ground, an arrow through his neck.’
      • ‘Kathryn shook her head and immediately dropped down to her knees from the swings.’
      fall, sink, collapse, descend, go down, slide, stumble, tumble
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    3. 2.3informal Collapse or die from exhaustion.
      ‘he looked ready to drop’
      • ‘I was ready to drop from lack of sleep, so we proceeded home.’
      • ‘She stayed up working until she dropped with exhaustion where she sat.’
      • ‘His horse looked ready to drop, and lines of worry and a sleepless night crossed his face.’
      • ‘The idea that all workers must work until they drop from exhaustion is to approach the problem from the wrong end.’
      • ‘I was exhausted and ready to drop before the day was even half over but there was no way in hell I was going to give Annie the satisfaction of seeing me like that.’
      • ‘Despite the fact that Josh forced her to fight him until she was ready to drop, she was having difficulties sleeping at night.’
      • ‘During the rut stags lost some 200 lb in weight, and can literally drop with exhaustion.’
      • ‘Sure enough, I was ready to drop at five o'clock, returned to bed and fell instantly to sleep.’
      • ‘By 3pm they were ready to drop and headed home laden with bargains.’
      • ‘They looked as though they were ready to drop though.’
      • ‘You are dog tired, ready to drop from fatigue at any moment, when someone ushers you into a cosy room filled with comfy cushions and relaxing music.’
      • ‘It was nearly three in the morning and he looked ready to drop from exhaustion.’
      • ‘Just can't get rid of your flabby belly, even though you do sit-ups and crunches until you're ready to drop?’
      • ‘‘You look ready to drop,’ he said the minute I left the practice room.’
      • ‘It looked like you were ready to drop after a couple of hours there, Brooke.’
      • ‘His psychology is surprisingly effective and though I am ready to drop I carry on trying my best, probably increasing my effort.’
      • ‘I'm more worried about dropping from sheer exhaustion.’
      • ‘She would pace until she dropped from exhaustion, sleep for half a day, then get up and start pacing again.’
      • ‘I began to fume as I was ready to drop from tiredness, but I couldn't say anything because the people there were really nice.’
      • ‘After eleven and a half hours, I was pretty much ready to drop.’
      collapse, faint, pass out, black out, swoon, lose consciousness, fall unconscious, keel over, fall down, sink down
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    4. 2.4 (of ground) slope steeply down.
      ‘the cliff drops ninety yards to the valley below’
      • ‘The side bordering the mouth of a river however dropped steeply into 7 foot of water where the push of the costal currents collided with the flow of the river.’
      • ‘In front the land dropped steeply away to the desert.’
      • ‘This charming village is huddled against a cliff which drops vertically to the river Dordogne.’
      • ‘To the east, a few hundred feet away, the land dropped like a low cliff into the water.’
      • ‘Keep to the lane as it bends left then right and it drops more steeply downhill.’
      • ‘I strolled by sea grape hedges and through a gate to a limestone cliff dropping to the Atlantic.’
      • ‘The cliffs drop away below in a tumble of honeyed sandstone rocks, and below the sun glints off the Pacific Ocean.’
      • ‘At the far end of the parking area, turn left through a kissing gate and follow the path which drops steeply downhill and leads to a bridge over the River Croal.’
      • ‘To my left, rough sloping ground dropped away steeply to reveal a clearing several hundred yards below.’
      • ‘Standing on the edge of cliffs that drop suddenly, it's easy to imagine that this is the world's brink.’
      • ‘The road from the top of the pass drops down to Lake Lyndon.’
      • ‘A couple of hundred yards from where the trees stopped, the ground dropped away in a sheer cliff.’
      • ‘The fields drop steeply to the sea, and some are terraced.’
      • ‘The rocky slopes dropped away abruptly into a plain scarred by dry creek-beds.’
      • ‘Carry on up the ridge to the summit, then descend south-east to reach a steep little spur dropping almost due east.’
      • ‘The ground dropped away from the far edge of the trail to a spectacular view of the canyon and the mountains beyond.’
      • ‘Another path, this time with a bench at the end, leads off to the right just before the track starts to drop steeply.’
      • ‘The transition from native forest is sudden, yet the larch plantation has its own beauty, as the track drops steeply to the Pudding Hill stream.’
      • ‘Long steep slopes drop away on either side and the long ridge you have just climbed is a reminder you have to return, together with a steep climb back on to the south top.’
      • ‘Directly below, cliffs drop almost straight to the sea.’
      slope downwards, slope, slant downwards, descend, go down, decline, fall away, sink, dip
      View synonyms
  • 3Make or become lower, weaker, or less.

    ‘he dropped his voice as she came into the room’
    [no object] ‘pretax profits dropped by 37 percent’
    ‘tourism has dropped off in the last few years’
    • ‘At night, the temperatures dropped almost intolerably low.’
    • ‘As night falls and temperatures drop below zero, the Bolivians start to party with fireworks and high jinks into the early hours.’
    • ‘In addition, predictions that housing prices would drop began appearing in the local media.’
    • ‘When blood pressure drops, less blood flows to the brain, leading to fainting.’
    • ‘Following his remand into custody the crime statistics for the area showed a massive fall and reported street crime dropped dramatically.’
    • ‘Evidence showed that risks of birth defects would drop if mothers-to-be took more folic acid.’
    • ‘Furious investors frantically sold their shares, causing the share price to drop 54 per cent in one day.’
    • ‘Since September of this year the figures have dropped considerably with 71 unemployed joining the workplace.’
    • ‘Grasshopper numbers will drop through the fall and most grasshoppers will die off with the first hard freeze.’
    • ‘And among the best fathers, it turns out, testosterone levels actually drop significantly after the birth of a child.’
    • ‘Temperatures have dropped significantly since snow fell over the past few days.’
    • ‘A dramatic collapse in interest rates continues, with yields generally dropping to the lowest levels since early 1999.’
    • ‘In Tokyo, which is normally seen as leading the nationwide trend, consumer prices fell even further, dropping 1.2% in August.’
    • ‘When peak flow readings drop, it's a sign of increasing airway inflammation.’
    • ‘As you know copper and cobalt prices have dropped to their lowest levels in many years.’
    • ‘Share prices have dropped from a high of £2.35 to a meagre six pence.’
    • ‘Energy demand might not drop much unless the price of energy doubled.’
    • ‘Her voice dropped to a whisper such that only the adjacent people could hear.’
    • ‘The average retirement age for a man has dropped from 67 in 1950 to 64 today.’
    • ‘Temperatures dropped dangerously low, even for a Russian climate.’
    decrease, lessen, make less, reduce, diminish, depreciate
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  • 4Abandon or discontinue (a course of action or study)

    ‘the charges against him were dropped last year’
    ‘drop everything and get over here!’
    • ‘When the men smelled the cooked food, they dropped everything, washed hands and faces, and took a seat at the tables.’
    • ‘She decided the trial should go ahead despite being advised by the state attorney that the charges, brought by an investor group, should be dropped.’
    • ‘When dolphins beach themselves, entire seaside towns drop everything to whisk them back into the water.’
    • ‘‘Angie has dropped everything for me and running the charity has changed both our lives,’ she said.’
    • ‘He can't expect everyone to drop what he or she is doing when he returns.’
    • ‘Should one drop everything to answer the phone?’
    • ‘In addition, a proposal to protect 1.2 million acres of owl habitat would be dropped.’
    • ‘The original charge was dropped without explanation over a year later.’
    • ‘What will happen if GPs decide to drop some of their services they currently provide?’
    • ‘The idea must have been dropped soon after the initial request.’
    • ‘If something comes up that has to be dealt with, I drop everything else, so that it can be done.’
    • ‘A proposal to furlough employees for four to five unpaid days over winter break has been dropped.’
    • ‘By the time he came before the magistrates' court on 9th June 1994 the drug charges had been dropped.’
    • ‘I think I'm right in saying that charges were brought but were subsequently dropped.’
    • ‘After years spent in and out of the courts, all charges were dropped without explanation or apology.’
    • ‘They faced years in jail if convicted but nine months later all charges were dropped without explanation.’
    • ‘‘The thing about studying here is that you have to be able to drop everything in a second,’ she explains.’
    • ‘Men started to drop what they were doing and run back to the camp.’
    • ‘Within six months, controls on food would be dropped.’
    • ‘Many airlines are dropping Saturday-night stay requirements on some restricted fares.’
    give up, finish with, withdraw from, retire from, cancel
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    1. 4.1 Discard or exclude (someone or something)
      ‘they were dropped from the team in the reshuffle’
      • ‘In those days you could be dropped for missing a tackle, and I know several players who got one or two caps when they should have had 30.’
      • ‘Mental health campaign groups have welcomed reports that the government has decided to drop its controversial Mental Health Bill.’
      • ‘It was long after he established himself as such that he eventually decided, for his own reasons, to drop the ‘Montgomery’ from his name.’
      • ‘Provisional ballots are a system designed to protect voters mistakenly dropped from the rolls or otherwise wrongly disqualified.’
      • ‘Peter congratulated him before asking which unfortunate soul had been dropped to make way for his young brother.’
      • ‘By September of 2003, Time Warner decided to drop AOL from its name altogether.’
      • ‘It will also examine its product portfolio, dropping the less profitable lines.’
      • ‘Freddie and his board were about to drop him when he quit.’
      • ‘Jaycee, 22, whose looks like his father, has dropped Chan as his surname and adopted Fong, an old family name.’
      • ‘The local weekly paper however decided to drop WPC Peters' story from the front page, for this!’
      • ‘I let kids know that if caught a second time in this, they will be dropped immediately from the course.’
      • ‘If you were looking for ways to get dropped, scoring your first ever career hat-trick wouldn't be at the top of the list.’
      • ‘Two consequences flow from dropping so many products each year.’
      • ‘He was dropped from the test team in January 2002 and has received just one chance since.’
      • ‘Believe me, our farm crew was 100 percent behind our decision to drop the smaller box size.’
      • ‘Both photos were going into the article but one had to be dropped due to space and that is when the caption mix-up happened.’
      • ‘Three former ministers dropped from the Cabinet a fortnight ago were appointed ministers of State.’
      • ‘We ran them in error at 8pm last night and they were immediately dropped and deleted from our system after that.’
      • ‘She decided to drop the random testing element of her bill.’
      • ‘Foreign languages were on the list of subjects schools most commonly asked to be allowed to drop from the timetable for struggling pupils, it said.’
      exclude, discard, expel, oust, throw out, leave out, get rid of
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    2. 4.2informal Stop associating with.
      ‘I was under pressure from family and friends to drop Barbara’
      • ‘He dropped all of his old friends and found new ones and within a month we had completely lost the boy we used to know.’
      • ‘What hurt the most is that he dropped me completely.’
      • ‘I think you should just drop her.’
      • ‘Alex discovered why he has been dropped as a friend and a lover by Benny.’
      • ‘You drop all of your friends and family, you disappear for months at a time, and you're rude as hell when you finally do resurface!’
      abandon, desert, throw over
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    3. 4.3 Omit (a letter or syllable) in speech.
      ‘our English au pair drops her h's’
      • ‘He had a habit of dropping letters in his conversations.’
      • ‘Ian's diction is superbly clear, although he drops his H's in the cockney manner.’
      • ‘Rosa drops the ends of words both in Italian and English.’
      • ‘Or to make things even more complicated, sometimes one syllable can be dropped altogether.’
  • 5Set down or unload (a passenger or goods), especially on the way to somewhere else.

    ‘he dropped the load off at a dealer's’
    ‘his mom dropped him outside and drove off to work’
    • ‘After dropping Donny off to his worried parents, Donovan carried me back to the house.’
    • ‘‘One day, after dropping Stephen off, I realised I was being followed,’ she says.’
    • ‘After dropping Adam off, I drove to the local supermarket in the area, which is a Franklins store.’
    • ‘The truth of the matter is you could very well drop your 10-year-old off and pick him up eight hours later and find him as safe as when you left.’
    • ‘The only problem is I can't drive for a while, so I need Wes to drop supplies off for me.’
    • ‘Older children drop their younger brothers and sisters at the bright and shiny preschool at the back of the school grounds before ambling on to their own classrooms.’
    • ‘The Royal Procession drops the Queen off at the paddock so that she can get a close look at her runner in the first race, Approval.’
    • ‘Mrs Throup added that the football pitch would enhance the village's amenities and the car park would be used for parents dropping and picking up their children and for employees of the nursery.’
    • ‘He offered to give him a lift to the airport, but Brigitte just wanted to be dropped at the bus stop.’
    • ‘You can drop your puppy off on your way to work and let him spend the day playing and interacting with other dogs until you pick him up on your way home.’
    • ‘Michael and I dropped Preacher John at his apartment, then took Rob home.’
    • ‘He dropped her off outside her apartment building, pressing the flowers into her hand.’
    • ‘The driver dropped his passengers outside the Tib Street café before parking the vehicle on Dorsey Street.’
    • ‘After everything was packed up they dropped Karina and I at the gym.’
    • ‘The cab dropped her off outside of her apartment and she walked, with some difficulty, to the front door.’
    • ‘The bus driver, who dropped me there, wanted to give me a personal tour.’
    • ‘After a while we decided that it was pretty boring so he dropped me home.’
    • ‘They rode back to the city, they had asked to be dropped at the supermarket hoping to buy necessary supplies.’
    • ‘If the roles were reversed, I wouldn't have hesitated in dropping him home.’
    • ‘Cat dropped her cousin off and went to the police station as requested.’
    remove, offload, discharge, jettison, deliver, deposit, set down, leave, put off, tip out, pour out
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    1. 5.1 Put or leave in a particular place without ceremony or formality.
      ‘just drop it in the mail when you've got time’
      • ‘Mel and I head to the mall to shop for Daz's birthday present and then drop it round to the flat.’
      • ‘Alyson drops off two volumes of short stories and a novel.’
      • ‘Cards should be dropped to the school within the next two weeks.’
      • ‘At lunchtime I went down town and dropped the Bach score in on James.’
      • ‘Once you have completed the questionnaire drop it in to me at the clinic and make an appointment to discuss the results.’
      deliver, bring, take, convey, carry, transport
      View synonyms
    2. 5.2 Mention in passing, typically in order to impress.
      ‘she dropped a remark about having been included in the selection’
      • ‘All I could think is that if I had won this prize, you couldn't stop me from dropping the fact into every conversation I had from that point forward.’
      • ‘Antinori, however, goes one step further and casually drops into the conversation that his team has cloned nine monkeys, ‘nine beautiful, healthy monkeys’.’
      • ‘She drops into her reminiscences an account of a half - sister of hers who refused an arranged marriage, and was systematically starved, beaten and tortured by her father, with the knowledge and sanction of the community.’
      • ‘Their author, however, talks about them less as books and more as the conduit for their characters - which she drops into conversation as if they were old mutual acquaintances.’
      • ‘That doesn't stop him from dropping the usual snide comments.’
      • ‘One day, while out shooting, Francis casually drops into the conversation that he has a daughter, Anna, from a fling years ago, whose mother has just died.’
      • ‘No surprise Susan fell for Andrew from the start, and yes, she'd picked up on the marriage hints he'd casually dropped along the way.’
      • ‘I spent the rest of the season casually dropping into any conversation I could that I once met Delia Smith.’
      • ‘Sure enough, on the drive back to Bandon, my obviously embarrassed sister tried as casually as she could to drop into conversation a message from my mother.’
      • ‘The writer / actor enjoys dropping names, making fancy comparisons, and expressing intellectualized insights.’
      • ‘He's harder to read, sullen when you first meet him, but very relaxed in Georgia's company and given to deadpan asides that he drops into her indiscreet chatter.’
      mention, refer to, speak of, hint at
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  • 6(in sports) fail to win (a point, game, or match)

    • ‘The visitors were yet to drop any points, conceding only one goal in their five games prior to the Leigh match.’
    • ‘The Killarney side had yet to drop any league points and went into the match with six wins from six outings.’
    • ‘Again, however, the Warriors fell short, dropping the contest 60-47.’
    • ‘We felt that we had dropped two points against Bournemouth last week so it was important to get back to winning ways and keep in touch with the sides at the top of the table.’
    • ‘Athletic have not dropped a point since the beginning of October.’
    • ‘The 2002 Wimbledon finalist has yet to drop a set in four matches.’
    • ‘Bradford Boys have dropped their first points of the season in the Under-15 Yorkshire Cup.’
    • ‘And having dropped four points in their previous two fixtures, the Londoners can ill afford to slip up again.’
    • ‘Two points behind Celtic, they cannot afford to rely on their rivals dropping points elsewhere along the way to the finish line and need the psychological boost of having their noses out in front.’
    • ‘Ukraine dropped three points and probably suffered a blow to their morale.’
    • ‘But this was a richly deserved triumph for Lindsay Davenport who went through the tournament without dropping a set.’
    • ‘The Chinese have yet to drop a match and have only conceded two goals while Germany started well before going through a dry patch during the pool phase.’
    • ‘As the wind increased he kept his score intact, dropping only one shot on the treacherous back nine at 15 seeing a birdie putt the last just lip out.’
    • ‘United could ill afford to drop a point in the championship race but after Paul Scholes slammed them into a 15th minute lead that possibility was never on the agenda.’
    • ‘The Bulls now languish mid table after dropping both of their Easter weekend matches against the competition's top two clubs.’
    • ‘With Albion dropping points Holme Wood Athletic are the new Premier leaders.’
    • ‘Unfortunately her second round fell apart as she dropped two shots to par with a 74.’
    • ‘Phil Mickelson drops a shot and falls back to a tie for third with the amateur Ricky Barnes.’
    • ‘The Derbyshire club had dropped points just once before this season after winning seven and drawing one of the first eight games to open a four point gap at the top.’
    • ‘People are going to drop points and it's up to us to capitalise on that.’
    lose, fail to win, concede, miss out on, give away, let slip
    View synonyms
    1. 6.1informal Lose (money), especially through gambling.
      ‘they drifted into a roulette parlor and dropped about fifteen dollars’
      • ‘This player was clearly a solid gold customer, dropping over 20 thousand.’
      • ‘Now don't get me wrong, I haven't dropped thousands of dollars. Not even hundreds of dollars.’
      • ‘I have dropped 10000 dollars so far.’
      • ‘Three Saudi Arabian princes dropped more than $6 million on the roulette wheel at the Monte Carlo Casino.’
      • ‘Before you step into a studio and drop your hard earned money, here are a few questions you may want to ask yourself beforehand.’
  • 7Bridge
    Force or be forced to play (a relatively high card) as a loser under an opponent's higher card, because it is the only card in its suit held in the hand.

    ‘West dropped the nine’
    [no object] ‘the queen dropped’
    • ‘The 3 of diamonds, the lowest card in the deck now becomes the start card if you dropped the two cards I suggested.’
    • ‘Face cards are dropped on face cards or aces of the same color.’
    • ‘Alternatively you need the jack with enough cards in your trump suit that you can reasonably hope to drop the 9 when you lead your jack.’

noun

  • 1A small round or pear-shaped portion of liquid that hangs or falls or adheres to a surface.

    ‘the first drops of rain splashed on the ground’
    • ‘As she steps on shore, drops of blood fall on the stones.’
    • ‘I watched as the drops of condensation fell from the glass of orange juice.’
    • ‘The canopy was so dense that it took 10 minutes of steady rain before I felt the first drop.’
    • ‘After all it is just drops of water falling from the sky.’
    • ‘But small drops of water have fallen onto the page, diluting the charcoal, smearing the picture, and bringing me back to reality.’
    • ‘Rain fell harder now; large drops of it fell and landed all around them.’
    • ‘If the drops don't grow large enough, they can begin falling as tiny drizzle drops, but these often evaporate before reaching the ground.’
    • ‘I was thinking about the way the rain falls, finding fellow drops.’
    • ‘Just then Jake felt a few drops of rain hit his nose, and blinked.’
    • ‘Camomile tea is good for a bad stomach, but also helps you to fall asleep, like a couple of drops of lavender oil on your pillow.’
    • ‘Abruptly the sky darkened again, and fat drops of rain fell.’
    • ‘By the time we finished walking round the projects, it was dark and the first drops of rain were beginning to fall.’
    • ‘I see not water drops, but tears falling from sad eyes.’
    • ‘Make your own tinted moisturizer by mixing a few drops of your favorite liquid foundation with your facial moisturizer.’
    • ‘When the cold aircraft strikes a supercooled drop of water, part of the drop freezes instantly and sticks to the aircraft's skin.’
    • ‘A drop of rain fell onto my nose, which sent a chill down my back.’
    • ‘With a sewing needle from her bedside table, Marylyn pricked her finger and squeezed it until two drops of blood fell onto the sheets.’
    • ‘We had dinner with Anne, Will, Jane, Liz and Bill on Friday evening and a few drops of rain fell.’
    • ‘The freezing point varied slightly each time, and from that variation they could determine the rate at which the drop would freeze for a given temperature.’
    • ‘We topped the pass as the first drops of rain fell, and then beat the storm in a reckless 20 kilometres downhill dash.’
    • ‘Before he could return his hands to his pockets, a drop of water splashed onto his arm.’
    • ‘The narrow nozzle serves to atomize the flowing liquid - break it up into tiny drops, which form a fine spray.’
    droplet, blob, globule, bead, bubble, tear, dot, spheroid, oval
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[often with negative] A very small amount of liquid.
      ‘there was not a drop of water in sight’
      • ‘He doesn't seem to be tired and hasn't taken a drop of water since we started.’
      • ‘The cold water tap produces nothing, not even a drop of liquid.’
      • ‘A £40 million pipeline has never carried a drop of water since it was built in North Yorkshire more than seven years ago.’
      • ‘They are not beggars; they do not want even a drop of water, if they have no right to it.’
      • ‘People living in these areas have to wait for hours altogether and sometimes they to wait for days altogether for a single drop of water.’
      • ‘Every drop of treated water has to be paid for.’
      • ‘Because of the dry season there was not one tiny drop of water in the river.’
      • ‘The brown plastic basin hadn't gotten a single drop of blood on it.’
      • ‘A light, wonderfully rich moisturiser which claims to work on rehydrating the skin in much the same way that a single drop of water can bring to life plants found in the deserts of South Africa.’
      • ‘The area is so dry that places have been recorded to go for more than three years at a time without a single drop of water.’
      • ‘Add just a drop of water and cream this to a paste.’
      • ‘In agriculture, every drop of water can be utilised by installing the drip irrigation system.’
      • ‘When the last few drops of the liquid entered my mouth the mug began to shake in my hands.’
      • ‘It was true when we were taught to save every grain and every drop of water.’
      • ‘He explains how precious every drop of water is in their lives.’
      • ‘"We realize that what we are accomplishing is a drop in the ocean.’
      • ‘Strangely, not a drop of water spilled over the side.’
      • ‘To ensure that every drop of water is properly utilised, beneficiaries in rural or urban areas should be reasonably charged on the basis of the quantity used.’
      • ‘She has not had a drop of water for almost two weeks.’
      • ‘In truth this sum is a mere drop in the ocean to the Chancellor.’
      small amount, little, bit, dash, spot, soupçon
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2[usually with negative] A drink of alcoholic liquor.
      ‘he doesn't touch a drop during the week’
      • ‘Right then and there she promised herself that she would never touch another drop of alcohol as long as she lived.’
      • ‘Revelry and bonhomie everywhere, but not a drop to drink.’
      • ‘He's very keen on certain diets and as for drinking, I have never seen him touch a drop.’
      • ‘Every drop of liquor in the house was cleaned out.’
      • ‘I was that wound up that I couldn't even drink a drop of beer.’
      • ‘I spent last night doing a spot of drawing, and while I did have a couple of drinks on the 24th, I didn't touch a drop yesterday.’
      • ‘To cope with the stress of sudden fame he took to drink, but these days never touches a drop.’
      • ‘It was strange, to buy a bottle of great wine for my guests and know I wouldn't drink a drop.’
      • ‘He has not touched a drop of drink for three years.’
      • ‘Tell me never to touch another drop of alcohol and it's done.’
      • ‘The only parties I go to are school dances and I've never touched a drop of alcohol in my life.’
      • ‘Though I never touched a drop of booze that day, I had a drunken smile on my face from start to finish.’
      • ‘He shrugged, utterly nonchalant, and it was then she realised he hadn't touched a drop of rum all evening.’
      • ‘The message that if you're driving, don't drink a drop is not getting through.’
      • ‘I didn't have a drop to drink until I was 18 and then I showed up at college and drank like a fish.’
      • ‘You have lost that disturbed look on your face and without drinking a drop of this delicious brandy I've brought for you.’
      • ‘I got a job in a large shipbuilding firm and for the first two weeks I didn't touch a drop of alcohol.’
      • ‘I haven't touched a drop of liquor since, and promptly gave away all of my cigarettes to friends on New Year's Day.’
      • ‘He seems relaxed and happy for the first time in years, hasn't touched a drop of booze since his time in The Priory more than two years ago, and his life is definitely back on track.’
      • ‘You are cordially invited to a reception and vigil with plenty of tea, sympathy and more than a drop of the hard stuff.’
    3. 1.3drops Liquid medicine to be measured or applied in very small amounts.
      ‘eye drops’
      • ‘In nonfluoridated areas, your child's doctor or dentist may prescribe fluoride drops, tablets, or vitamins.’
      • ‘If you do use decongestant nasal drops or sprays, be careful to take them for no more than three days.’
      • ‘For watering eyes, antihistamine eye drops work quickly and are suitable for people with eye symptoms that come and go.’
      • ‘The number of capsules, tablets, drops, or dropperfuls of solution that you take depends on the strength of the medicine.’
      • ‘I had a box of medication - eye drops and ointments.’
      • ‘If you have bacterial conjunctivitis, you might need to use antibiotic eye drops.’
      • ‘In a week, after treatment with steroid drops and tablets, the inflammation subsided.’
      • ‘Your baby's eyes will be treated with medicated drops or ointment.’
      • ‘Antihistamine drops that are very well tolerated also are available, and those are prescription.’
      • ‘Bacterial conjunctivitis can be treated with antibiotic eye drops or ointment, which can only be obtained with a prescription from your doctor.’
      • ‘After Caleb was dressed the doctor came back with his medicated drops and he was ready to go.’
      • ‘Echinacea is a herbal medicine available as drops or tablets.’
      • ‘Your child's doctor will give you antibiotic ointment or drops along with specific instructions on how to care for your child.’
      • ‘Just like any other medicine, eye drops can cause side effects.’
      • ‘Infective conjunctivitis caused by bacteria is usually treated with antibiotic drops or ointment, in the affected eye.’
      • ‘Steroid nasal sprays and drops help to prevent all nose symptoms, including, sneezing and congestion.’
      • ‘To treat conjunctivitis in a newborn, doctors may use antibiotics, eye drops, or ointment.’
      • ‘After the operation, you will be given eye drops containing a steroid to help reduce inflammation, and an antibiotic to stop the eye getting infected.’
      • ‘Pink eye is usually treated with antibiotic drops or ointment.’
      • ‘When faced with a patient who is lactose intolerant, many health professionals recommend lactase pills or drops.’
  • 2[usually in singular] An instance of falling or dropping.

    ‘they left within five minutes of the drop of the curtain’
    • ‘The missile weighed 23,000 pounds and the drop was successful.’
    • ‘The crowd of spectators sat on the edges of their seats, waiting with bated breath for the drop of the violet flag.’
    • ‘The sale is binding upon both seller and buyer at the drop of the hammer.’
    • ‘Suddenly, the ship halted with the drop of the anchor.’
    1. 2.1 An act of dropping supplies or troops by parachute.
      ‘the planes finally managed to make the drop’
      • ‘After flying back from Copenhagen, he says he got straight on the phone to the authorities and all he did in the end was broker a deal to supply the transport plane used in the drop.’
      • ‘There was, however, no way of contacting them and arranging for a parachute drop.’
      • ‘An article in the Post suggests the US military was ready to begin emergency food drops into New Orleans much earlier in the week.’
      • ‘‘Greg, I need a report on enemy ground troops before I go in for a drop,’ he said through his headset.’
      • ‘The food drop, thus far, seems to be a propaganda exercise, not a serious attempt to win favor by helping to address a humanitarian crisis.’
      • ‘The Abwehr conducted four parachute drops to re-supply them with equipment, radios and cash.’
      • ‘At any time, however, if any doubt arises the pilot can abort the drop - caution is considered an asset.’
      • ‘We made the drop a few minutes later but, because of darkness, could not tell if it was close to the kayak.’
      • ‘The mood of VE day will be re-created with a massive free party in the park on Sunday, which will feature Second World War vehicles and a parachute drop, weather permitting.’
      • ‘The council offered to arrange for a helicopter drop of supplies.’
      • ‘He would time the drop to occur at the same instant as a burst of friendly shots.’
      • ‘One of the most obvious lessons Stirling learned was that a parachute drop could be a disaster.’
      • ‘I was reminded of the part in A Bridge Too Far when the only supply drop the encircled Allied troops actually manage to retrieve contains nothing but burgundy berets.’
      • ‘Ok, now I imagine on a trek like this you carry your food and all supplies, or are there food drops or some basic support?’
      • ‘The rain was so heavy during the ammunition drop that the aircraft hovering on top of the trees could barely be seen from the ground.’
      • ‘The most important decision made by Stirling was that any insertion into enemy territory would be best done by going overland - not by parachute drop.’
      • ‘Parachute drops could be made by Whitley and Wellington bombers.’
      • ‘Of the eight planes that set out, only four were able to make their drops.’
    2. 2.2 A fall in amount, quality, or rate.
      ‘a significant drop in consumer spending’
      • ‘Sports facilities in York have suffered a dramatic drop in visitor numbers, despite huge support to keep them open.’
      • ‘While, in comparison to last summer, the employment rate has taken a slight drop, the numbers are by no means a bad omen.’
      • ‘The massive fall-off in lucrative television revenue means a drop of at least £14m.’
      • ‘That is a significant drop of some 30,000 crimes.’
      • ‘He welcomed the drop that had occurred in UK birth rates.’
      • ‘The economic slowdown in the US has led to a precipitous drop in tax revenues for states and municipalities.’
      • ‘The drop from 44.7 to 43.7 completed a full year of decline for the sector.’
      • ‘This corresponds to a drop from an annual gross emigration rate of 14.8 percent to 3.7 percent of the population.’
      • ‘There has been a big decrease in unemployment over the past year, with a drop of 583 since October 1999.’
      • ‘This drop could mean as much as a 50 percent decrease in heart disease risk.’
      • ‘A fitter person can experience a drop of more than 50 beats in the first minute.’
      • ‘What has been unusual in recent years has been the speed of manufacturing's decline - a drop of five percentage points of output share in as many years.’
      • ‘The drop was largely due to changes in conversion rates.’
      • ‘There were reductions all over the Bay, with the biggest drop recorded in the Eastern Bay with 25 per cent fewer crime complaints.’
      • ‘Swindon is one of the worst performing towns, seeing a 1.6 per cent drop in prices.’
      • ‘China Eastern has experienced a 20 per cent drop in the number of passengers taking Sino-US routes since September 11.’
      • ‘Manufacturing saw a drop of 17,000 jobs and 11,000 jobs were lost in transportation, mostly trucking.’
      • ‘No current literacy statistic is available, but in 1995 the rate was estimated to be 42 percent, a sharp drop from the previous decade.’
      • ‘Housing prices in general continued to decline in April, with a drop of 7.1 per cent.’
      • ‘Meeting analysts' expectations was necessary to avoid a sharp drop in share prices.’
      decrease, reduction, decline, lowering, lessening, falling off, fall-off, downturn, slump
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3 An abrupt fall or slope.
      ‘standing on the lip of a sixty-foot drop’
      • ‘Then you've got these 30 ft drops you gotta be careful of.’
      • ‘The drop is somewhere between five and seven feet.’
      • ‘We were on a very narrow road with a steep drop along the right hand side, and were going along quite slowly when the off side wheels went over the edge.’
      • ‘A section of loose shale and small boulders, next to a steep drop to the creek, gives us a sample of things to come.’
      • ‘The second mile is a huge drop into Brooklyn, and by about halfway, in the borough of Queens, 12 flat miles are followed by a climb, a drop and another steep climb.’
      • ‘The steep drop to the creek was an easy place for the disposal of the highwaymen's victims.’
      • ‘I peeked at my surroundings every minute or so, which is why my heart fell into my stomach at the sight of the steep drop.’
      • ‘Mr Teasdale had put on last year's ski video in an attempt to take nervous people's mind off the drop which was a few feet from their right.’
      • ‘It must be waterproof, vermin-proof and able to survive a 100-foot drop without a parachute.’
      • ‘I got to my feet slowly, well aware of the drop only a few feet away.’
      • ‘Many follow the island's 1,365 miles of irrigation channels, called levadas, stretches of which run along steep slopes with precipitous drops to one side.’
      • ‘With its thick, stone wall to our right and a steep drop to our left, we didn't dare take our eyes off the narrow path for long.’
      • ‘He relaxed in the sun, near the edge of a ten-meter drop that hit the slope of the mountain.’
      • ‘On the third morning of his trek across the mountains, he found himself on the edge of a steep cliff, with a drop of several hundred feet before him.’
      • ‘But get to the top and gaze over Callander, and you soon realise how steep the drop is: you have climbed higher than 1,000 ft.’
      • ‘A short distance from this site, Mr Tobin stops his van at the side of the mountain road where there is a steep drop to a stream.’
      • ‘He plunged down the sheer drop and landed in the stream.’
      • ‘Last night it was still not clear whether the group had had a torch, but there are a series of notices on the cliff-top path warning of a steep drop.’
      • ‘The main gates could be opened with a strong shoulder alone, and beyond them was only a drop of a few hundred feet.’
      • ‘First there are steep stone steps, then a gradual rise, a levelling out, a swoop to the top and a steep drop to the stone steps on the other side.’
      cliff, abyss, chasm, gorge, gully, precipice
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4the dropBridge The playing of a high card underneath an opponent's higher card, because it is the only card in its suit held in the hand.
      • ‘He would have gone down had he played for the drop of the spade queen.’
      • ‘With nine cards you should play for the drop.’
  • 3informal A delivery.

    ‘I got to the depot and made the drop’
    • ‘The Royal Mail was this morning searching all post to pick out voting papers, to be delivered in special drops or collected by town hall staff.’
    • ‘Later the same night, two men dressed in dark-coloured hooded tops and wraparound-style sunglasses confronted the delivery man as he made the drop in Avenue Terrace.’
    • ‘Our previous delivery van had to make several drops and then return to the depot.’
    1. 3.1US A mailbox.
    2. 3.2 A hiding place for stolen, illicit, or secret things.
      ‘the lavatory's toilet tank could be used as a letter drop’
      • ‘Hell, you'll probably get arrested for the mail box drop too.’
      • ‘On the plus side, it does enable you to act out your John Le Carre Cold War fantasies with no shortage of dead letter drops and darkened doorways from which to covertly observe the locals.’
      • ‘A tin can filled with information - part of a dead drop - was smeared with messy motor oil.’
      • ‘Our requests were usually met, although there were occasional adjustments in types of weapons sent and frequent changes in time or locations of drops.’
      • ‘After the coup, he ran a newspaper stand, which functioned as a letter drop for the clandestine Communist Party.’
  • 4[usually with modifier] A piece of candy or a lozenge.

    ‘a lemon drop’
    • ‘His wearying recourse to the one-liner is the literary equivalent of tossing choc drops to the reader.’
    • ‘Suck on hard candy, such as lemon drops or peppermint to decrease bitter or bad tastes in your mouth.’
    • ‘‘Do you need a cough drop?’ he asked, politely.’
    • ‘Instead, I rummage through my bag, even though I'm sure all my cough drops are gone.’
    • ‘Dogs with a sweet tooth can fulfil their wish through chocolate milk drops which are safe as they contain minimal amount of cocoa which vets say is harmful to dogs.’
    sweet, lozenge, pastille, piece of confectionery
    View synonyms
  • 5An earring that hangs down from the earlobe.

    ‘silver drop earrings’
    ‘simple amethyst and diamond drops’
    • ‘Her short dark blond hair was curled around a simple Russian tiara with matching diamond drop earrings.’
    • ‘Alicia returned her attentions to the mirror and slipped her favourite pearl drop earrings into her lobes.’
    • ‘The land was bought after selling off Amina's earrings and drops.’
    • ‘There were freshwater pearl drop earrings and a matching five-stringed pearl choker, framed in delicate rose gold.’
    • ‘I ended up wearing a blue satin dress and pearl drop earrings.’
  • 6A section of theatrical scenery lowered from the flies; a drop cloth or drop curtain.

    • ‘There are also major costs associated with rehabilitating the beautiful drops that the theatre owns.’
    • ‘Specialty weddings can be held on stage with elaborate drops and lighting.’
    • ‘Judd's sets consisted of green and blue upstage drops that moved through a number of positions but did not further encroach on the open space of the stage.’
    drape, curtain, drop cloth, drop curtain, drop scene, tableau curtain, frontal, dossal
    View synonyms
  • 7A trapdoor on a gallows, the opening of which causes the prisoner to fall and thus be hanged.

    • ‘Once placed on the drop of the gallows Baird addressed the silent crowd.’
    • ‘Smith the Hangman placed him in the centre of the drop.’
    • ‘Once assembled on the drop, the hangman, probably Edward Dennis, put the nooses round their necks while they prayed with the Ordinary.’
    1. 7.1the drop Execution by hanging.
      • ‘A large number of men and women sentenced to the drop had their sentences commuted by the Home Secretary.’
      • ‘Some, who might have come miles to see ‘the drop’, were determined to have a good time - almost as though it was a holiday or they had gone to a carnival.’
      hanging, gibbeting
      View synonyms

Phrases

  • at the drop of a hat

    • informal Without delay or good reason.

      ‘he used to be very bashful, blushing at the drop of a hat’
      • ‘It's funny how kids can change allegiances at the drop of a hat, whereas adults bear grudges over years and decades.’
      • ‘Last night, shocked parishioners spoke glowingly of her as a friend and neighbour and as a lady who would do one a good turn at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘Most small business employers aren't callous mongrels who sack workers unfairly or at the drop of a hat to gain a sense of power.’
      • ‘She's still experiencing sleepless nights and cries at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘Today, car loans are available at the drop of a hat, and second hand cars come at throwaway prices.’
      • ‘We do not take parents to court at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘He's dangerously self-absorbed, and bursts into tears at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘Lisa's inclined to change her mind at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘I can't just take time off at the drop of a hat.’
      • ‘He was known for his generosity and friendliness - but he could turn nasty at the drop of a hat.’
  • drop the ball

    • informal Make a mistake; mishandle things.

      ‘I really dropped the ball on this one’
      • ‘The sense is that it's the federal government that has somehow dropped the ball.’
      • ‘And so they have a responsibility, and they're dropping the ball from where I'm sitting.’
      • ‘The first is that the professors tasked with teaching the students the ins and outs of the business really dropped the ball.’
      • ‘From what we can see, the union dropped the ball and is now crying foul.’
      • ‘Does it create the perception that we're dropping the ball somehow?’
      • ‘No, but I think that there are times that we have certainly dropped the ball in the last few years.’
      • ‘I'm not dropping the ball on my other work roles.’
      • ‘I believe that this committee has completely dropped the ball.’
      • ‘The only thing I'm worried about is that we're dropping the ball on the economy and homeland security.’
      • ‘In both cases, he and his administration dropped the ball and thousands died as a result.’
  • drop dead

    • 1Die suddenly and unexpectedly.

      ‘she had seen her father drop dead of a heart attack’
      • ‘Cod liver oil isn't fashionable any longer, but cutting edge research has just shown that omega - 3 fats in fish oil can keep both men and women from dropping dead suddenly.’
      • ‘His father had dropped dead of a heart attack and a 28-year-old uncle suffered the same fate.’
      • ‘When he was eventually released, he suddenly dropped dead - perhaps from brain damage sustained in detention.’
      • ‘Born into a ‘lower middle-class family’ in a village outside Slough, she saw her father, a Polish émigré, drop dead in front of her when she was six years old.’
      • ‘She came to live in Bolton after her husband William suddenly dropped dead and she had to give up the pub.’
      • ‘After his wife suddenly drops dead while vacuuming, his life takes an unexpected turn.’
      • ‘Suddenly he drops dead and his soul is whisked away, to his not inconsiderable consternation, to heaven to be judged.’
      • ‘If I am to believe my Chinese friends, my health is so poor, I am in danger of dropping dead at any minute.’
      • ‘Only later did the pair find out that it was also the name of a racehorse which had performed well in country meetings for a while before suddenly dropping dead.’
      • ‘In Boston, 32 people with pacemakers, all within a 10-block radius, suddenly drop dead.’
      • ‘How can a perfectly healthy 26-year-old guy just drop dead all of sudden?’
      die, be killed, be slain, be a casualty, be a fatality, be lost, lose one's life, perish, drop dead, meet one's end, meet one's death
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1informal [in imperative]Used as an expression of intense scorn or dislike.
        • ‘Every one of you guys should just drop dead and go to hell.’
        • ‘William murmured into her ear through clenched teeth. ‘Drop dead.’’
        • ‘‘Neil really is a nice guy,’ I said coldly. ‘I hope you drop dead.’’
  • drop a (or the) dime on

    • informal Inform on (someone) to the police.

      • ‘How exactly does dropping the dime on other Americans qualify as service?’
      • ‘He drops a dime on his friend in a heartbeat, since he still wanted the money.’
      • ‘They're scared to death that if anybody finds out that they dropped the dime on their cousin, or a gang member, or a drug dealer, they're going to die.’
      • ‘She's going to drop a dime on him to the employer, and he's going to lose his job.’
      denounce, give away, betray, incriminate, inculpate, report, tell the authorities about, tell the police about
      View synonyms
  • drop like flies

  • drop one's guard

    • Abandon one's habitual defensive or protective stance.

      • ‘The minister even drops his guard and lapses into English.’
      • ‘If we bask in false security and drop our guard, the rot spreads, corrupting the entire society.’
      • ‘Police may also have dropped their guard in cross border vigilance.’
      • ‘He was happy to take any questions, but refused some and never entirely dropped his guard.’
      • ‘Stalemated, with the both of them pointing their weapons at each other, Ian couldn't afford to drop his guard.’
      • ‘If you look dejected and say nothing, others have a tendency to drop their guard, confident that they're up against a loser.’
      • ‘Suddenly, after a lively, spirited start, they were hit on the counter-attack then, either side of half-time, dropped their guard and were punished by one of the most lethal finishers in Europe.’
      • ‘I dropped my guard and I looked at the camera as if it was another person and expressed all the emotions I felt at the time.’
      • ‘Some accidents, such as drownings and falls, can be caused by people dropping their guard.’
      • ‘That does not mean, of course, we can drop our guard or fail to take every measure necessary to protect the public.’
  • drop a hint (or drop hints)

    • Let fall a hint or hints, as if casually or unconsciously.

      ‘he was dropping hints that in the future he would be taking a back seat in politics’
      • ‘At the meeting Gormley dropped a hint as to how a settlement might be arrived at without breaching the government's pay policy.’
      • ‘I think that Jack isn't the commitment type though because every time I drop a hint he looks at me with a blank expression.’
      • ‘In his journal Neil drops a hint about a visit to Holland in April.’
      • ‘Got a crush and want to drop a hint without being too obvious?’
      • ‘Then she drops a hint about where the transport expansion will be.’
      • ‘He had dropped a hint when he was here a couple of months ago.’
      • ‘I think dad might have dropped a hint to him that I might be bringing a friend.’
      • ‘Now that I think about it, maybe she was dropping a hint.’
      • ‘He didn't think he should ask, so he hoped someone would drop a hint.’
      • ‘Leaving her father would be difficult, and Mrs. Weston drops a hint that though Emma has no prospects at present, in the future her son could make a good match.’
  • a drop in the bucket (or britishocean)

    • A very small amount compared with what is needed or expected.

      ‘the $550 million is likely to be a drop in the bucket’
      • ‘Although she was pleased with the £25 increase in child benefit, she felt it was a drop in the ocean when compared to childcare costs and the expense of rearing children.’
      • ‘Recall that sales at Whole Foods were $3 billion in 2003 - a drop in the bucket compared with the $900 billion Americans spent on food in 2002.’
      • ‘In any case, the incentives a government could reasonably offer are a drop in the ocean compared with the total cost of raising a child.’
      • ‘Even so, the amount of money is still a drop in the bucket when compared to the size of the growing global mental health epidemic.’
      • ‘The public knows this is a drop in the bucket compared with what's needed.’
      • ‘Still, it's a drop in the bucket when you compare it to the overall budget.’
      • ‘‘This is just a drop in the ocean compared to what will happen in Scotland, as our pubs have always been less profitable than Irish pubs,’ he said.’
      • ‘And the money is just a drop in the ocean compared with the real cost of restoring the county's roads, according to opposition councillors.’
      • ‘It is a drop in the ocean compared with the overall cost of the policing operation.’
      • ‘That's a drop in the bucket compared with the knowledge stored in the world's libraries.’
  • drop someone a line

    • Send someone a note or letter in a casual manner.

      ‘drop me a line at the usual address’
      • ‘And when he dropped me a line about it, my reaction was the same.’
      • ‘If you would like to cash in by selling your collection to us then please drop us a line with both a description and an image.’
      • ‘They're on the lookout for designers who want to submit art for use on their site, so if you're interested please drop them a line.’
      • ‘Thank you if you've ever commented or dropped me a line about something - it's always hugely appreciated, and shows I must be doing something right.’
      • ‘If you're interested in applying or would like to find out more, drop us a line.’
      • ‘I couldn't find an email address on your site, so I thought I'd just drop you a line here.’
      • ‘So in the spirit of the season and for old times sake, we just thought we'd drop you a line to say thanks.’
      • ‘If you want to make a case for your hometown, please drop us a line.’
      • ‘We also hope to get the bus companies involved in helping out, and if anyone can help us financially, or with banners, they can drop us a line.’
      • ‘So if you're interested and in town over the festive period then drop me a line and I'll send you details.’
      correspond, write a letter, communicate, get in touch, keep in touch, keep in contact
      View synonyms
  • drop names

      • ‘I have always found it hilarious when people drop names inaccurately, an ever present peril for those in whom ambition exceeds capacity for detail.’
      • ‘In literary conversations, he is only capable of repeating cant phrases and dropping names.’
      • ‘He reverted back to his horrible habit of dropping names.’
      • ‘The film's young protagonist is a High Culture caricature, a bookish revolutionary who parades about in sports jackets and ties, dropping names and spewing lines from poetry and drama by Swinburne, Wilde and Shaw.’
      • ‘These gave him a chance to drop names, review an adventurous life, and get in a few cracks about the ignorant press.’
      • ‘One makes a point of talking really fast, using big words, and dropping names of academic writers in a field he's studied and knows you haven't.’
      • ‘Initially, the characters seem a drawback, particularly Ford, a one-note hustler always dropping names on his cellphone as he walks the streets of New York.’
      • ‘He's not a man for dropping names, and his two feet are firmly planted on the ground.’
      • ‘There is no need for us to impress others by dropping names or touting our achievements for ‘the closer you get to Jesus, the less you need to promote yourself.’’
      • ‘A respected writer and academic, he drops names like confetti, judges everyone, hates to lose at anything and has an arrogance that knows no bounds.’
  • drop one's serve

    • (in tennis) lose a game in which one is serving.

      • ‘She lost concentration in the fifth game to drop her serve again.’
      • ‘When he dropped his serve at the start of the third set with yet another fluffed forehand, he smacked his racket down and growled as it bounced above his shoulder.’
      • ‘Godwin dropped his serve again early in both the second and third sets.’
      • ‘He overcame dropping his serve in the opening game of the first set to break the Italian seventh seed twice to take the set.’
      • ‘Having gone a break up, he dropped his serve but it was no cause for alarm.’
      • ‘Serena, who returned from eight months off in March after knee surgery following her Wimbledon win, looked in form despite dropping her serve once in the fourth game of the second set against her 51st-ranked opponent.’
      • ‘But needing two games for victory, Henman dropped his serve for the first time against the Slovakian.’
      • ‘But she failed to take advantage of her opportunity to extend the match to a third set, dropped her serve, and made little impression in the tiebreak.’
      • ‘The German dropped his serve at 1-1 when he made a forehand error, and Canas held his serve comfortably to decide the first set.’
      • ‘He didn't drop his serve throughout the match, winning 7-6, 6-7, 6-4.’
  • drop a stitch

    • Let a stitch fall off the end of a knitting needle.

      • ‘She frequently dropped a stitch and her clumsy, fluttering hands always became entangled with the yarn till she ended up with an endless row of impossible knots.’
      • ‘She ruined the scarf she was knitting after dropping a stitch in fright.’
      • ‘She had her knitting in her lap and was trying to concentrate on her stitches when she heard tapping at her window. Darn it! She dropped a stitch.’
      • ‘She shuttles back and forth from the personal to the political, without dropping a stitch.’
  • drop one's trousers

    • Deliberately let one's trousers fall down, especially in a public place.

      • ‘Some of the group were also alleged to have dropped their trousers and made lewd comments, reducing one girl to tears.’
      • ‘The meeting, attended by most of the pubs in the town, also heard that the teenagers reacted violently when challenged and had been seen dropping their trousers at passing motorists.’
      • ‘Still watching the events, the taxi driver witnessed one of the youths approaching the table and dropping his trousers.’
      • ‘These are the people who dropped their trousers and ‘mooned’ at Buckingham Palace a few years ago to an audience consisting mainly of police officers and Daily Mail reporters.’
      • ‘After knocking politely on the door, I stepped inside and dropped my trousers.’
      • ‘Last year two ‘gentlemen’ outside our window dropped their trousers and relieved themselves in full view of tenants and children.’
      • ‘The Queen got an unexpected view on Tuesday when one of her guests dropped his trousers and dashed off among the tea-drinking crowd at Buckingham Palace.’
      • ‘Fame has lost its meaning in the world we live in: you can be famous for dropping your trousers outside Buckingham Palace.’
      • ‘He threatened to urinate over the police, but instead resorted to dropping his trousers and showing his behind.’
      • ‘Police are hunting a man who exposed himself after he dropped his trousers to walkers in a Warminster park.’
  • have the drop on

    • informal Have the advantage over.

      ‘if your enemy gets the drop on you he can kill you’
      • ‘We have been the first in so many categories because we have always had the drop on style.’
      • ‘We can handle one gunman when we have the drop on him.’
      • ‘I had the drop on him; he couldn't get away.’
      • ‘It will stop some crimes and deter others, but the risk would still be very high, especially since the fare will often have the drop on the driver.’
      • ‘I think we've already established the fact that you don't want that to happen,’ a man's voice on the other end sounded as if they knew they had the drop on this man.’
      • ‘The 7am flight was a bit of a pain, but it meant that we got to the office in Newcastle around 8: 30 and thus got the drop on a number of their staff.’
      • ‘They had the drop on us, so we complied and they cleaned the store out in about forty seconds or so.’
      • ‘Luckily, blokes tend to be very shallow so I had the drop on them’
      • ‘We were horribly outnumbered and they had the drop on us.’
      • ‘They had the drop on me and if I'd resisted, they wouldn't have cared either way.’
  • a drop too much

    • informal Enough alcohol to make one drunk.

      ‘you drive, because he has taken a drop too much’
      • ‘A sleepless night, a touch of fever or a drop too much whisky are all it takes to bring impossible demons grinning and howling from the void.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • drop back/behind

    • Fall back or get left behind.

      ‘the colt was struggling to stay with the pace and started to drop back’
      • ‘Button is dropping back from Alonso's Renault and is now 5.7 seconds behind the Spaniard.’
      • ‘The driver kept up with us for some way along the road before seeing sense and dropping behind so that I was able to stop our mad dash.’
      • ‘Earlier this season Metcalfe, who despite his recurring misfortune in the matter of untimely injuries has hung on to his pace pretty well, appeared to be dropping back in the queue at full-back.’
      • ‘With Brindley dropping back, less than two seconds covered Webster, Steinhausen and Reeves, but the North Yorkshire ace upped the pace.’
      • ‘A few others were behind us, but they were dropping behind farther with every step.’
      • ‘I didn't get a very good start and I was stuck behind Ralf in turn one, so I dropped back to eighth.’
      • ‘Throughout our riverside run the club leaders made sure that beginners were never running alone, even when it meant slowing down to keep anyone from dropping back too far.’
      • ‘He led early in the race before dropping back to 15th.’
      • ‘He began to drag behind the main group, dropping back to where Lethalvos was immersed in thought.’
      • ‘At the end of the first lap the 2004 champion was in 20th place, 15.9 seconds behind the leader and dropping back as traffic slowed him.’
      fall back, fall behind, get left behind, lag behind, straggle, linger, dawdle, dally, hang back, loiter, bring up the rear, take up the rear
      dilly-dally
      tarry
      View synonyms
  • drop by/in

    • Call informally and briefly as a visitor.

      ‘they would unexpectedly drop in on us’
      • ‘If you follow this system of preparation and daily quick cleaning, you will always have a clean bathroom that is ready for when an unexpected visitor drops by.’
      • ‘Visitors drop by, and they leave this place with new ideas about what they can do themselves.’
      • ‘If you get the chance to visit Budapest, make sure you drop by one of the spas.’
      • ‘When Suzette drops by for an unannounced visit, Vinnie is horrified at the sudden appearance of a random element in her well-ordered life.’
      • ‘How do they like to communicate - by e-mail, voicemail or an informal chat when you drop by their office?’
      • ‘A friend who drops in is given a free sample to try out and if he is happy with it, he will naturally come back to enquire more about the company.’
      • ‘A visit to Bruges is incomplete without dropping in at the shops displaying the famous lace works or to the lace training centre.’
      • ‘He has made employment his priority, dropping in on a job-centre for his first official visit.’
      • ‘People can drop by and visit friends or relatives without letting them know ahead of time.’
      • ‘Do drop in and help raise funds and maybe pick up the perfect Christmas gift for a loved one.’
  • drop into

    • 1Call casually and informally at (a place)

      ‘he'd actually considered dropping into one of the pickup bars’
      • ‘Q. If you were passing, you might on occasion drop into the Brownings as you would to any client, is that right?’
      • ‘Salford residents can drop into their local community centre or library for information.’
      • ‘Further information can be had by calling 843525 or by dropping into the centre and talking to any of the leaders.’
      • ‘The public can drop into one of the offices of Kerry Citizens Information Service over the next week and find out about rights and entitlements.’
      • ‘If Cantlon and Henley wanted to converse with a wider range of people, they could easily drop into a saloon.’
      • ‘For further information, drop into the Youth Information Centre, Newtown, Castlebar.’
      • ‘All unemployed people are welcome to drop into the Monday Club for information all courses currently available.’
      • ‘A third royal visit in just over a week takes place on Tuesday when the Duke of Edinburgh drops into the borough to meet youth workers, teachers and young people who participate in the award scheme which bears his name.’
      • ‘Visitors are actually advised not to drop into the Eden Project if it is raining!’
    • 2Pass quickly and easily into (a habitual state or manner)

      ‘she couldn't help dropping into a Brooklyn accent’
      • ‘For the most part, teenagers can't help dropping into the angsty moody mode periodically.’
      • ‘He drops back into his native Aussie in times of stress.’
      • ‘He questions Winters ceaselessly and Dick can't help dropping into officer mode to meet him blow for verbal blow.’
      • ‘In the beginning, when we entered the room for the first morning sit, we might sense the utter stillness of the place, before dropping into our habitual world of thoughts.’
  • drop off

    • Fall asleep easily, especially without intending to.

      ‘struggle as she might, she kept dropping off’
      • ‘But even dropping off for a moment can be time enough for someone to go through your bag to see if you are wealthier than you look.’
      • ‘Once I had the bed made, I quickly dropped off to sleep.’
      • ‘Help your baby feel safe and secure with plenty of loving attention throughout the day so she can drop off more easily.’
      • ‘And every time someone drops off to sleep, the prize money falls.’
      • ‘Punctuating his statement with a yawn, he leaned back, almost immediately dropping off to sleep.’
      • ‘Every time he dropped off for a snooze she'd set the doll to screech and stick it near his ear.’
      • ‘By around 7: 30 she's normally getting a bit tired again, so we lie next to her and hug her until she drops off for a nap.’
      • ‘Scott Cameron had spent the evening watching TV and had happily chatted to his sister Caroline before dropping off to sleep.’
      • ‘I turned over, punched the pillow into a new comfort zone, and dropped off just about instantly.’
      • ‘As well as trying to outdo each other, the contestants must also work as a team because the prize pot decreases every time one of them drops off.’
      fall asleep, go to sleep, get to sleep, have a nap, catnap, drowse
      View synonyms
  • drop out

    • 1Cease to participate in a race or competition.

      • ‘She was forced to drop out of the race on the next lap because of a mechanical problem.’
      • ‘She thought about dropping out of the heptathlon with two events remaining because of a foot injury.’
      • ‘If that meant dropping out of a World Cup, that was what Calvin would have wanted.’
      • ‘In recent months, however, his form has plummeted, dropping out of races in Gateshead and Crystal Palace.’
      • ‘She entered the presidential race in 1995 but dropped out a few days later.’
      • ‘They'd spent the afternoon cheering and dancing - but after seeing Radcliffe drop out of the race on the stadium big screen the party mood evaporated instantly.’
      • ‘But unfortunately for him, the fall forced him to drop out of the race.’
      • ‘He was so upset that he hatched a devious scheme to get the first five qualifiers to drop out of the race.’
      • ‘‘When you've been winning it really hurts to drop out of one competition, but there's other things for us to concentrate on,’ he said.’
      • ‘Hamilton was deeply disappointed at the prospect of dropping out of the race after dedicating his year to the campaign.’
    • 2Abandon a course of study.

      ‘kids who had dropped out of college’
      • ‘I decided I was learning more about the design of the future in my day job so I dropped out of the course after a year.’
      • ‘She dropped out of the course because she could not afford to pay the £16,000 annual fees.’
      • ‘We found this guy who dropped out of school and had nothing to do.’
      • ‘I have a friend whose son dropped out of high school.’
      • ‘A dear friend of mine who dropped out of community college in her first semester makes more money than I do.’
      • ‘By this time of course, I had dropped out of high school.’
      • ‘But after six months he dropped out of the course.’
      • ‘Then David dropped out of his chemistry course and became assistant manager.’
      • ‘Within the black community, dropping out of public school was considered downright treasonous.’
      • ‘He dropped out of education and wound up sleeping rough for a few months.’
    • 3Reject conventional society to pursue an alternative lifestyle.

      ‘a child of the sixties who had temporarily dropped out’
      • ‘Apparently it's quite the thing to drop out of society for months and take to the rivers and byways.’
      • ‘Some however for whatever reason just decide to drop out of society and choose to live on the streets.’
      • ‘That's why I've dropped out of society and joined a convent in El Salvador.’
      • ‘These people lament the coming of the backpacker age, harping back to the sixties and seventies when you had to drop out of society to get on the trail…’
      • ‘I could just drop out of society forever, never speak to the rest of them again, and live out my days in total solitude.’
      • ‘This is one of the book's best sections because of its quiet reflections on the possibility of actually dropping out of society and embracing a new way of living.’
      • ‘And I can't keep my kids away from the bad influences of junk food and junk toys without dropping out of society.’
      • ‘People actually do live like this - they don't pay their taxes, they don't have running water or electricity and they choose to sort of drop out of society.’
      • ‘I applaud these crustaceans for their insistence that it's ok to drop out of useful society in order to protect a feeling of global harmony that I doubt has ever existed.’
      • ‘Many societies, she notes, encourage their youth to drop out for a period of self-discovery.’
    • 4Rugby
      Restart play with a drop kick.

      • ‘It was, however, Keighley who finished the game on top, forcing play to the try line with a long drop out from the restart.’
      • ‘The Wasps made a mess of Batley's kick-off and from the drop out scrum-half Gary Barnett spotted a gap and beat Callaghan to score.’
      • ‘Having withstood early pressure and a strong downfield wind, Newbridge used the ball well early on but two basic drop out re-start errors saw them fall behind.’
      • ‘RI took the lead with a Mathew Yates penalty and when Tim Nash scored an opportunist try straight from a drop out RI looked good for their 10-0 advantage.’
      1. 4.1Score a drop goal.
        • ‘Armoy retained possession from the 22 drop out and their out-half spotted a gap in the Newry back line.’
        • ‘A quick 22 drop out was followed by a quick tap penalty.’
        • ‘Stephan Minogue's attempted penalty from halfway narrowly missed and was touched down for a 22 drop out.’

Origin

Old English dropa (noun), droppian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to German Tropfen a drop tropfen to drip also to drip and droop.

Pronunciation:

drop

/dräp/