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From Middle English droupen, from Old Norse drúpa (to droop), from Proto-Germanic *drūpaną, *drupōną (to hang down, drip, drop), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰrewb- (to drip, drop).



droop (third-person singular simple present droops, present participle drooping, simple past and past participle drooped)

  1. (intransitive) To hang downward; to sag.
    • 1866, John Keegan Casey, “Maire My Girl” in A Wreath of Shamrocks, Dublin: Robert S. McGee, p. 20,[1]
      On the brown harvest tree
      Droops the red cherry.
    • a. 1992, quote attributed to Sylvester Stallone
      I'm not handsome in the classical sense. The eyes droop, the mouth is crooked, the teeth aren't straight, the voice sounds like a Mafioso pallbearer, but somehow it all works.
  2. (intransitive) To slowly become limp; to bend gradually.
    • c. 1605, William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act III, Scene 2,[2]
      Good things of day begin to droop and drowse;
      While night’s black agents to their preys do rouse.
    • 1676, Thomas Hobbes (translator), Homer’s Iliads in English, London: William Crook, Book 18, p. 289,[3]
      The Grapes that on it hung were black, and all
      The Vines supported and from drooping staid
      With silver Props, that down they could not fall []
    • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, chapter III, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 24962326:
      Long after his cigar burnt bitter, he sat with eyes fixed on the blaze. When the flames at last began to flicker and subside, his lids fluttered, then drooped; but he had lost all reckoning of time when he opened them again to find Miss Erroll in furs and ball-gown kneeling on the hearth [].
    • 2010, john g rees, Halocline:
      His head had drooped with his hair across his face.
    • 2012, Howie Carr, Hard Knocks:
      She was trying to hang in, but her chin was drooping onto her chest.
  3. (intransitive) To lose all energy, enthusiasm or happiness; to flag.
    • c. 1596, William Shakespeare, King John, Act V, Scene 1,[4]
      But wherefore do you droop? why look you sad?
    • 1685, John Dryden, Threnodia Augustalis, London: Jacob Tonson, XII, p. 17,[5]
      Amidst the peaceful Triumphs of his Reign,
      What wonder if the kindly beams he shed
      Reviv’d the drooping Arts again []
    • 1711, Jonathan Swift, “The Accomplishment of the First of Mr. Bickerstaff’s Predictions” in Miscellanies, London: John Morphew, p. 284,[6]
      I saw him accidentally once or twice about 10 Days before he died, and observed he began very much to Droop and Languish []
    • 1713, Joseph Addison, Cato, a Tragedy, London: J. Tonson, Act I, Scene 2, p. 5,[7]
      I’ll animate the Soldier’s drooping Courage,
      With Love of Freedom, and Contempt of Life.
  4. (transitive) To allow to droop or sink.
    • c. 1591, William Shakespeare, Henry VI, Part 1, Act II, Scene 5,[8]
      [] pithless arms, like to a wither’d vine
      That droops his sapless branches to the ground;
    • 1892, Arthur Christopher Benson, “Knapweed” in Le Cahier Jaune: Poems, Eton: privately printed, p. 62,[9]
      Down in the mire he droops his head;
      Forgotten, not forgiven.
  5. To proceed downward, or toward a close; to decline.
    • 1674, John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book 11, lines 175-178,[10]
      [] let us forth,
      I never from thy side henceforth to stray,
      Wherere our days work lies, though now enjoind
      Laborious, till day droop []
    • 1847, Alfred Tennyson, “The Princess” in The Princess; a Medley, London: Edward Moxon, p. 46,[11]
      [] and now when day
      Droop’d, and the chapel tinkled, mixt with those
      Six hundred maidens clad in purest white []

Derived termsEdit


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droop (plural droops)

  1. Something which is limp or sagging.
  2. A condition or posture of drooping.
    He walked with a discouraged droop.
  3. (aviation) A hinged portion of the leading edge of an aeroplane's wing, which swivels downward to increase lift during takeoff and landing.

Coordinate termsEdit

(part of aeroplane wing):


Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit


  • droop at OneLook Dictionary Search






  1. singular past indicative of druipen