Definition of wind down in US English:

wind down

phrasal verb

  • 1(of a mechanism, especially one operated by clockwork) gradually lose power.

    • ‘The left engine normally wound down and wind-milled, while continuing to power the left side hydraulics.’
    • ‘The quality is fine for TV broadcast and animation motors give us more accuracy from one frame to the next, because the shutter speed alters slightly as the spring winds down in the clockwork motor.’
    • ‘It wasn't long before the machine started to wind down and stop.’
    • ‘Turbine generators here wind down, the emergency system to protect the nuclear reactors from overload kicks in, and the propeller shaft stops.’
    • ‘Once that timer winds down to zero, the game ends.’
    1. 1.1informal (of a person) relax after stress or excitement.
      • ‘Complementary approaches include aromatherapy and reflexology and these may, if nothing else, provide a quiet, relaxed environment in which to wind down.’
      • ‘Where I used to listen to shouty music and stomp around the flat, these days I'm more partial to something chilled which helps me wind down.’
      • ‘The couple, who now live in Bolton, will celebrate retirement with a holiday in Tenerife where they plan to wind down and relax.’
      • ‘So, now that I've taken a cool shower, I intend to relax and wind down.’
      • ‘Tired runners and walkers can relax and wind down at the celebration where they can enjoy music, entertainment and light refreshments.’
      • ‘A bath helps you wind down, reduces the stress of the day and helps you sleep much more soundly.’
      • ‘She has confessed she likes nothing more to wind down from her showbiz lifestyle by chilling out with her grandmother.’
      • ‘Palm Beach is a place to relax, wind down and live elegantly, and if you want more, remember, Miami Beach is just a short gorgeous, scenic drive down the highway.’
      • ‘Try listening to relaxing music an hour before bedtime to help you wind down or even fall asleep.’
      • ‘The Education Minister said the students deserved a chance to wind down after such a stressful period.’
      relax, unwind, calm down, cool down, cool off, ease off, ease up, take it easy, rest, put one's feet up
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    2. 1.2also wind something down Draw or bring gradually to a close.
      ‘business began to wind down as people awaited the new regime’
      • ‘For our Oxford project, we are running six-weeks of follow-up work which will wind the project down and then we'll start working on new material.’
      • ‘We still haven't a clue whether we are going to be sold, wound down or kicked out.’
      • ‘But so powerful did they prove themselves as wealth generators that investors in them soon abandoned any pretence of willfully winding them down.’
      • ‘The weaker he became, the more urgently he focused on winding the business down.’
      • ‘The sympathetic nervous system pumps the body up, but when you take a deep breath the parasympathetic nervous system kicks in and starts to wind the system down.’
      • ‘Workers at the centre at the Cork Airport Business Park were told that the plant would be wound down over the next three months.’
      • ‘Roy and a handful of others stayed for a further 15 months to wind the factories down for good.’
      • ‘The evening ends with a downbeat number, an odd choice for an encore, but it winds things down nicely enough.’
      • ‘Despite the regular practice of winding operations down in the early part of the year, some of the costs of the business, such as its warehouse, were ongoing.’
      • ‘If a buyer cannot be found, the company will be wound down and closed.’
      draw to a close, come to an end, tail off, taper off, diminish, lessen, dwindle, decline
      bring to a close, bring to a end, wind up, run down, close down, phase out
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