• "Ping Wang was fished out in a state of collapse."
    "Ping Wang was fished out in a state of collapse."
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v collapse collapse due to fatigue, an illness, or a sudden attack
    • v collapse lose significance, effectiveness, or value "The school system is collapsing","The stock market collapsed"
    • v collapse suffer a nervous breakdown
    • v collapse break down, literally or metaphorically "The wall collapsed","The business collapsed","The dam broke","The roof collapsed","The wall gave in","The roof finally gave under the weight of the ice"
    • v collapse cause to burst "The ice broke the pipe"
    • v collapse fall apart "the building crumbled after the explosion","Negotiations broke down"
    • v collapse fold or close up "fold up your umbrella","collapse the music stand"
    • n collapse the act of throwing yourself down "he landed on the bed with a great flop"
    • n collapse a natural event caused by something suddenly falling down or caving in "the roof is in danger of collapse","the collapse of the old star under its own gravity"
    • n collapse a sudden large decline of business or the prices of stocks (especially one that causes additional failures)
    • n collapse an abrupt failure of function or complete physical exhaustion "the commander's prostration demoralized his men"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

collapsed man watched by crows collapsed man watched by crows
wolfhound sitting by collapsed man wolfhound sitting by collapsed man

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Tacoma Narrows Bridge which was located in Washington was nicknamed "Galloping Gertie" because of the unusual way it twisted and swayed with even with the slightest winds when people would drive on it. The bridge collapsed on November 7, 1940, fortunately no humans died, except for a dog
    • Collapse A falling together suddenly, as of the sides of a hollow vessel.
    • Collapse A sudden and complete failure; an utter failure of any kind; a breakdown.
    • Collapse (Med) Extreme depression or sudden failing of all the vital powers, as the result of disease, injury, or nervous disturbance.
    • Collapse To fail suddenly and completely, like something hollow when subject to too much pressure; to undergo a collapse; as, Maximilian's government collapsed soon after the French army left Mexico; many financial projects collapse after attaining some success and importance.
    • Collapse To fall together suddenly, as the sides of a hollow vessel; to close by falling or shrinking together; to have the sides or parts of (a thing) fall in together, or be crushed in together; as, a flue in the boiler of a steam engine sometimes collapses . "A balloon collapses when the gas escapes from it."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: The minarets ofthe Taj Mahal in India are angled at 88 degrees outwards so that they would not collapse into the structure should an earthquake occur
    • collapse To fall together, or into an irregular mass or flattened form, through loss of firm connection or rigidity and support of the parts or loss of the contents, as a building through the falling in of its sides, or an inflated bladder from escape of the air contained in it.
    • collapse Figuratively— To break down; go to pieces; come to nothing; fail; become ruined: as, the project collapsed.
    • collapse In pathology, to sink into extreme weakness or physical depression in the course of a disease.
    • collapse To appear as if collapsing; lose strength, courage, etc.; subside; cease to assert one's self or push one's self forward: as, after that rebuke he collapsed.
    • n collapse A falling in or together, as of the sides of a hollow vessel.
    • n collapse Figuratively, a sudden and complete failure of any kind; a breakdown.
    • n collapse In medicine, an extreme sinking or depression; a more or less sudden failure of the vital powers: as, the stage of collapse in cholera.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: There are over 3,500 bras hanging behind the bar at Hogs and Heifers, a bar in Manhattan. So many, in fact, that they caused a beam to collapse in the ceiling.
    • n Collapse kol-aps′ a falling away or breaking down: any sudden or complete breakdown or prostration
    • v.i Collapse to fall together, to contract: to fall or break down: to go to ruin: to lose heart
    • ***


  • Georg C. Lichtenberg
    “A vacuum of ideas affects people differently than a vacuum of air, otherwise readers of books would be constantly collapsing.”
  • Morris Bergman
    Morris Bergman
    “The current collapse of industrial society may well be the planet's way of avoiding a larger death.”
  • Publius Cornelius Tacitus
    “All enterprises that are entered into with indiscreet zeal may be pursued with great vigor at first, but are sure to collapse in the end.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. collapsus, p. p. of collabi, to collapse; col-, + labi, to fall, slide. See Lapse


In literature:

An exhausted vocabulary sighed, collapsed.
"Erik Dorn" by Ben Hecht
The newcomer's screen flared briefly, then collapsed.
"The Players" by Everett B. Cole
I collapsed under my load, and for some moments I could not get up again.
"Across Unknown South America" by Arnold Henry Savage Landor
The unicorn's swing brought it on around but it collapsed, falling to the ground with jarring heaviness.
"Space Prison" by Tom Godwin
If the tubing is thin, a good deal of care will have to be exercised in order to prevent a collapse.
"On Laboratory Arts" by Richard Threlfall
I feel the mountain collapsing!
"Frank Merriwell's Pursuit" by Burt L. Standish
There were injuries, no doubt, but in the present condition of inflammation and collapse it was only possible to wait.
"The Love Affairs of Pixie" by Mrs George de Horne Vaizey
Mellon collapsed like an unoccupied overcoat.
"Unwise Child" by Gordon Randall Garrett
This condition is known as pneumothorax and may result in collapse of the lung.
"Special Report on Diseases of the Horse" by United States Department of Agriculture
Its consort The Sceptre collapsed within the week.
"Chance" by Joseph Conrad

In poetry:

A horse collapses in the middle of an alley
Leaves fall on him
Our love trembles
And the sun too.
"Autumn" by Jacques Prevert
The patient watches. Six days long
In frenzy blizzards rave relentlessly,
Roll over rooftops, roar along,
Brace, rage, and fall, collapsing senselessly.
"The patient watches" by Boris Pasternak
The ivory tower became a skeleton
and the skeleton collapsed into a moment
O! do not judge things by their aspect,
for everything changes as the wind does.
"Untitled " by Jorge Mateus de Lima
Grow shrill and shriller. Pass the spot,
The strained boughs arch toward collapse.
A whistle and—CRACK! there's the shot!
Or is it but a bough which snaps?
"The Flower Of Flame" by Robert Nichols
No wonder the ancient cultures of conceit
in his technique of unsettlement foresaw
the fall of princes, the collapse of
their lucrative patterns of frustration:
"In Memory of Sigmund Freud " by W H Auden
And yet these fine collapses are not lies
More than the pirouettes of any pliant cane;
Our obsequies are, in a way, no enterprise.
We can evade you, and all else but the heart:
What blame to us if the heart live on.
"Chaplinesque" by Harold Hart Crane

In news:

Next story in Bridge Collapse.
WASHINGTON — Defibrillators that jump-start a stopped heart may save lives in airports and shopping malls, but few people keep them at home in case of collapse — even though that's where most cardiac arrests occur.
Governments have collapsed and bailouts have run into the hundreds of billions of euros, and still the eurozone crisis builds.
Environmental and trade problems caused the Mayan collapse, says another new study.
The Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been looking into what factors played a role in the Aug 13, 2011 collapse that killed seven people and left several others injured.
A Detective-Story Approach To the Twin Towers' Collapse.
Enlarge Travis Fedschun/The Jersey Journal Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer and Michael Nannini from Boswell Engineering examine a section of Frank Sinatra Park that collapsed in May as seen on Monday, June 25, 2012.
Viable economies need to break away from collapsing euro currency.
College towns have weathered the recession and housing collapse more than the rest of America, but the neighborhood around USC is an exception.
Officials said at least three buildings have collapsed or partially collapsed and six homes are deemed severely stressed by heavy wet snow.
Insurance – Directed verdict properly denied on building collapse issue.
The BlackBerry PlayBook is a disaster, and not just because sales have collapsed.
Companies charged in fatal drill rig collapse at TTC subway extension project at York University.
In the first hour of the show Brian discusses the disappointing Cubs season, and the White Sox collapse.
Vacaville firefighters examine the damage caused when a portion of the roof of Quick Way Gas Station at Merchant and Mason streets collapsed under the weight of debris.

In science:

For example, in Figure 1, the patch on the central vertex is selected, and Λ∗ (A) = Λ(A)1A⊆V ∗ . that vertex is removed; this causes a triangular face to collapse to an edge, and two edges incident to the vertex to collapse to patches on the vertices at the other ends.
Structure of large random hypergraphs
The Oppenheimer-Snyder treatment of the spherically symmetric collapse of a “dust” (with negligible pressure) – simplified image of a gravitationally collapsing star – utilizes Friedmann’s formalism relative to the return motion in a periodic oscillation, from F = Fmax to F = 0 .
On Friedmann's universes
Such an invariance may not be unexpected as, whilst large-scale core properties vary significantly, it is only after collapse through several orders of magnitude in density that stars form, and such a collapse may make many large-scale properties irrelevant.
Limits on the primordial stellar multiplicity
These supernovae also contribute to the chemical evolution of the galaxy, in some ways more strongly than core-collapse supernovae, for SNe Ia release all of their material to space while the core-collapse supernovae leave behind a remnant core containing the bulk of the iron produced by the stars.
Rates and Progenitors of Type Ia Supernovae
It is found in numerical simulations that the ellipsoidal collapse model provides a significant improvement over the spherical collapse model.
On Random Walks with a General Moving Barrier