decline verb

1 refuse

ADV. politely | absolutely I absolutely decline to discuss my dealings with him or anyone.

2 become smaller/weaker

ADV. considerably, dramatically, drastically, markedly, sharply, significantly, steeply The economy has declined sharply in recent years. | a little, slightly | fast, rapidly The market for these products is declining fast. | steadily | gradually, slowly | further

PREP. by Profits declined by 6% this year. | from, to The number of full-time staff has declined from 300 to just 50.

PHRASES decline in importance/numbers/size This section of the market has slowly declined in importance.