- n. & v.
1 a a small round or pear-shaped portion of liquid that hangs or falls or adheres to a surface (drops of dew; tears fell in large drops). b a very small amount of usu. drinkable liquid (just a drop left in the glass). c a glass etc. of alcoholic liquor (take a drop with us).
2 a an abrupt fall or slope. b the amount of this (a drop of fifteen feet). c an act of falling or dropping (had a nasty drop). d a reduction in prices, temperature, etc. e a deterioration or worsening (a drop in status).
3 something resembling a drop, esp.: a a pendant or earring. b a crystal ornament on a chandelier etc. c (often in comb.) a sweet or lozenge (pear-drop; cough drop).
4 something that drops or is dropped, esp.: a Theatr. a painted curtain or scenery let down on to the stage. b a platform or trapdoor on a gallows, the opening of which causes the victim to fall.
5 Med. a the smallest separable quantity of a liquid. b (in pl.) liquid medicine to be measured in drops (eye drops).
6 a minute quantity (not a drop of pity).
7 sl. a a hiding-place for stolen or illicit goods. b a secret place where documents etc. may be left or passed on in espionage.
8 sl. a bribe.
9 US a box for letters etc.
—v. (dropped, dropping)
1 intr. & tr. fall or let fall in drops (tears dropped on to the book; dropped the soup down his shirt).
2 intr. & tr. fall or allow to fall; relinquish; let go (dropped the box; the egg dropped from my hand).
3 a intr. & tr. sink or cause to sink or fall to the ground from exhaustion, a blow, a wound, etc. b intr. die.
4 a intr. & tr. cease or cause to cease; lapse or let lapse; abandon (the connection dropped; dropped the friendship; drop everything and come at once). b tr. colloq. cease to associate with.
5 tr. set down (a passenger etc.) (drop me at the station).
6 tr. & intr. utter or be uttered casually (dropped a hint; the remark dropped into the conversation).
7 tr. send casually (drop me a postcard).
8 a intr. & tr. fall or allow to fall in direction, amount, condition, degree, pitch, etc. (his voice dropped; the wind dropped; we dropped the price by pound20; the road dropped southwards). b intr. (of a person) jump down lightly; let oneself fall. c tr. remove (clothes, esp. trousers) rapidly, allowing them to fall to the ground.
9 tr. colloq. lose (money, esp. in gambling).
10 tr. omit (a letter, esp. aitch, a syllable etc.) in speech.
11 tr. (as dropped adj.) in a lower position than usual (dropped handlebars; dropped waist).
12 tr. give birth to (esp. a lamb, a kitten, etc.).
13 a intr. (of a card) be played in the same trick as a higher card. b tr. play or cause (a card) to be played in this way.
14 tr. Sport lose (a game, a point, a contest, a match, etc.).
15 tr. Aeron. deliver (supplies etc.) by parachute.
16 tr. Football a send (a ball) by a drop-kick. b score (a goal) by a drop-kick.
17 tr. colloq. dismiss or omit (was dropped from the team).
Phrases and idioms:
at the drop of a hat given the slightest excuse. drop anchor anchor ship. drop asleep fall gently asleep. drop away decrease or depart gradually. drop back (or behind or to the rear) fall back; get left behind. drop back into return to (a habit etc.). drop a brick colloq. make an indiscreet or embarrassing remark. drop-curtain (or -scene) Theatr. a painted curtain or scenery (cf. sense 4 of n.). drop a curtsy make a curtsy. drop dead! sl. an exclamation of intense scorn. drop down descend a hill etc. drop-forging a method of forcing white-hot metal through an open-ended die by a heavy weight. drop-hammer a heavy weight raised mechanically and allowed to drop, as used in drop-forging and pile-driving. drop-head Brit. the adjustable fabric roof of a car. drop in (or by) colloq. call casually as a visitor. drop-in centre a meeting-place where people may call casually for advice, conversation, etc. a drop in the ocean (or a bucket) a very small amount, esp. compared with what is needed or expected. drop into colloq.
1 call casually at (a place).
2 fall into (a habit etc.). drop it! sl. stop that! drop-kick Football a kick made by dropping the ball and kicking it on the bounce. drop-leaf (of a table etc.) having a hinged flap. drop off 1 decline gradually.
2 colloq. fall asleep.
3 = sense 5 of v. drop on reprimand or punish. drop out colloq. cease to participate, esp. in a race, a course of study, or in conventional society.
1 colloq. a person who has dropped out.
2 the restarting of a game by a drop-kick. drop scone Brit. a small thick pancake made by dropping batter into a frying pan etc. drop-shot (in lawn tennis) a shot dropping abruptly over the net. drop a stitch let a stitch fall off the end of a knitting-needle. drop-test Engin. n. a test done by dropping under standard conditions.
—v.tr. carry out a drop-test on. drop to sl. become aware of. fit (or ready) to drop extremely tired. have the drop on colloq. have the advantage over. have had a drop too much colloq. be slightly drunk.
Etymology: OE dropa, drop(p)ian ult. f. Gmc: cf. DRIP, DROOP
Useful english dictionary. 2012.