Meaning of FALL in English


v. & n.

--v.intr. (past fell; past part. fallen)

1. a go or come down freely; descend rapidly from a higher to a lower level (fell from the top floor; rain was falling). b drop or be dropped (supplies fell by parachute; the curtain fell).

2 a (often foll. by over) cease to stand; come suddenly to the ground from loss of balance etc. b collapse forwards or downwards esp. of one's own volition (fell into my arms; fell over the chair).

3 become detached and descend or disappear.

4 take a downward direction: a (of hair, clothing, etc.) hang down. b (of ground etc.) slope. c (foll. by into) (of a river etc.) discharge into.

5 a find a lower level; sink lower. b subside, abate.

6 (of a barometer, thermometer, etc.) show a lower reading.

7 occur; become apparent or present (darkness fell).

8 decline, diminish (demand is falling; standards have fallen).

9 a (of the face) show dismay or disappointment. b (of the eyes or a glance) look downwards.

10 a lose power or status (the government will fall). b lose esteem, moral integrity, etc.

11 commit sin; yield to temptation.

12 take or have a particular direction or place (his eye fell on me; the accent falls on the first syllable).

13 a find a place; be naturally divisible (the subject falls into three parts). b (foll. by under, within) be classed among.

14 occur at a specified time (Easter falls early this year).

15 come by chance or duty (it fell to me to answer).

16 a pass into a specified condition (fall into decay; fell ill). b become (fall asleep).

17 a (of a position etc.) be overthrown or captured; succumb to attack. b be defeated; fail.

18 die (fall in battle).

19 (foll. by on, upon) a attack. b meet with. c embrace or embark on avidly.

20 (foll. by to + verbal noun) begin (fell to wondering).

21 (foll. by to) lapse, revert (revenues fall to the Crown).


1. the act or an instance of falling; a sudden rapid descent.

2 that which falls or has fallen, e.g. snow, rocks, etc.

3 the recorded amount of rainfall etc.

4 a decline or diminution.

5 overthrow, downfall (the fall of Rome).

6 a succumbing to temptation. b (the Fall) the sin of Adam and its consequences, as described in Genesis.

7 (of material, land, light, etc.) a downward direction; a slope.

8 (also Fall) US autumn.

9 (esp. in pl.) a waterfall, cataract, or cascade.

10 Mus. a cadence.

11 a a wrestling-bout; a throw in wrestling which keeps the opponent on the ground for a specified time. b a controlled act of falling, esp. as a stunt or in judo etc.

12 a the birth of young of certain animals. b the number of young born.

13 a rope of a hoisting-tackle.

Phrases and idioms:

fall about colloq. be helpless, esp. with laughter. fall apart (or to pieces)

1. break into pieces.

2 (of a situation etc.) disintegrate; be reduced to chaos.

3 lose one's capacity to cope.

fall away

1. (of a surface) incline abruptly.

2 become few or thin; gradually vanish.

3 desert, revolt; abandon one's principles. fall back retreat. fall-back (attrib.) emergency, esp. (of wages) the minimum paid when no work is available. fall back on have recourse to in difficulty.

fall behind

1. be outstripped by one's competitors etc.; lag.

2 be in arrears. fall down (often foll. by on) colloq. fail; perform poorly; fail to deliver (payment etc.).

fall for colloq.

1. be captivated or deceived by.

2 admire; yield to the charms or merits of. fall foul of come into conflict with; quarrel with.

fall guy sl.

1. an easy victim.

2 a scapegoat.

fall in

1. a take one's place in military formation. b (as int.) the order to do this.

2 collapse inwards. falling star a meteor. fall in love see LOVE.

fall into line

1. take one's place in the ranks.

2 conform or collaborate with others. fall into place begin to make sense or cohere.

fall in with

1. meet by chance.

2 agree with; accede to; humour.

3 coincide with.

fall off

1. (of demand etc.) decrease, deteriorate.

2 withdraw. fall-off n. a decrease, deterioration, withdrawal, etc.

fall out

1. quarrel.

2 (of the hair, teeth, etc.) become detached.

3 Mil. come out of formation.

4 result; come to pass; occur. fall out of gradually discontinue (a habit etc.).

fall over oneself colloq.

1. be eager or competitive.

2 be awkward, stumble through haste, confusion, etc. fall-pipe a downpipe.

fall short

1. be or become deficient or inadequate.

2 (of a missile etc.) not reach its target. fall short of fail to reach or obtain. fall through fail; come to nothing; miscarry. fall to begin an activity, e.g. eating or working.

Etymology: OE fallan, feallan f. Gmc

Oxford English vocab.      Оксфордский английский словарь.