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decline (the sense of ‘fall off in vigour, vitality, &c.’ occurs, cf. DECLINED)
1. to incline or lean “to” Err. III. ii. 44.
2. to fall, sink Shr. Ind. i. 119 “with d-ing head,” Troil. IV. v. 188, Cor. II. i. 180, Tim. I. i. 89, Ham. II. ii. 508; in pa. pple. Wint. V. ii. 82 “had one eye d-d,” Lucr. 1661 “With head d-'d” ; fig. to fall “upon” (an unworthy object) Ham. I. v. 50 “to Upon a wretch.”
3. to bend (the head, &c.) Err. III. ii. 139, Lr. IV. ii. 22.
4. to inflect (a word) Wiv. IV. i. 43; (hence) to go through (a matter) formally and in order R3 IV. iv. 97 (‘go through it all from beginning to end’), Troil. II. iii. 55 “I'll decline the whole question.”
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hide References (6 total)
  • Cross-references in text-specific dictionaries from this page (6):
    • William Shakespeare, Coriolanus, 2.1
    • William Shakespeare, King Lear, 4.2
    • William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, 1.5
    • William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, 2.2
    • William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors, 3.2
    • William Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece
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