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downward

[doun-werd] /ˈdaʊn wərd/
adverb
1.
Also, downwards. from a higher to a lower place or condition.
2.
down from a source or beginning:
As the river flows downward, it widens.
3.
from a past time, predecessor, or ancestor:
The estate was handed downward from generation to generation.
adjective
4.
moving or tending to a lower place or condition.
5.
descending from a source or beginning.
Origin
1150-1200
1150-1200; Middle English dounward, aphetic variant of adounward, Old English adūnweard. See down1, -ward
Related forms
downwardly, adverb
downwardness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for downward
  • The fires burn downward, acquiring air through fissures in rock and microscopic spaces between grains of dirt.
  • One fourth to one half of the annual rainfall percolates downward, becoming groundwater.
  • Two-year colleges, however, seem to be exempt from the downward trend.
  • Various bad influences had put her in a downward spiral until she ended up under arrest and facing jail.
  • She had me in a chair that rotated so my head was slanted downward and she could get at the area.
  • There's also a moving subplot of dislocation and downward mobility in the author's own family.
  • Neither really has the appearance of a carp, because their mouths are not the downward-pointing mouths of bottom-feeding fish.
  • When the coating cracks, the cracks spread downward and reach the underlying channels, which ooze out healing agent.
  • There is a limit to the downward trend of manual labor.
  • If the production curve starts downward right after use, then the plastic sheeting concept isn't viable.
British Dictionary definitions for downward

downward

/ˈdaʊnwəd/
adjective
1.
descending from a higher to a lower level, condition, position, etc
2.
descending from a beginning
adverb
3.
a variant of downwards
Derived Forms
downwardly, adverb
downwardness, noun

downwards

/ˈdaʊnwədz/
adverb
1.
from a higher to a lower place, level, etc
2.
from an earlier time or source to a later: from the Tudors downwards
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for downward
adv.

c.1200, from down (adv.) + -ward. Old English had aduneweard in this sense. Downwards, with adverbial genitive, had a parallel in Old English ofduneweardes.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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