A portion of a collapsed freeway.
- The definition of collapse means to cave in, to fall or to break down into pieces when the support to stand is lost.
An example of to collapse is someone falling to the ground when their knees give way after the person hears terrible news.
intransitive verbcollapsed, collapsing
- to fall down or fall to pieces, as when supports or sides fail to hold; cave in; shrink together suddenly
- to break down suddenly; fail; give way: the enemy's defense collapsed
- to break down or fail suddenly in health or physical strength
- to fall down, as from a blow or exhaustion
- to fall or drop drastically, as in value or force
- to fold or come together compactly
Origin of collapse; from Classical Latin collapsus, past participle of collabi ; from com-, together + labi, to fall: see lap
verbcol·lapsed, col·laps·ing, col·laps·es
- To fall down or inward suddenly; cave in.
- To break down suddenly in strength or health and thereby cease to function: a monarchy that collapsed.
- To fold compactly: chairs that collapse for storage.
- The act of falling down or inward, as from loss of supports.
- An abrupt failure of function, strength, or health; a breakdown.
- An abrupt loss of perceived value or of effect: the collapse of popular respect for the integrity of world leaders.
Origin of collapseLatin collābī, collāps-, to fall together : com-, com- + lābī, to fall.
(third-person singular simple present collapses, present participle collapsing, simple past and past participle collapsed)
- (intransitive) To fall down suddenly; to cave in
- (intransitive) To cease to function due to a sudden breakdown; to fail suddenly and completely
- Pyramid schemes tend to generate profits for a while and then collapse.
- (intransitive) To fold compactly
- (cricket) For several batsmen to get out in quick succession
- To cause something to collapse.
- Hurry up and collapse the tent so we can get moving.
- (intransitive) To pass out and fall to the floor or ground, as from exhaustion or other illness; to faint
- The exhausted singer collapsed onstage and had to be taken to the hospital.
- The act of collapsing
- Constant function, one-valued function (in automata theory) (in particular application causing a reset)
From Latin collapsus (past participle of collabi)