Words related to decline
active word-forming element in English and in many verbs inherited from French and Latin, from Latin de "down, down from, from, off; concerning" (see de), also used as a prefix in Latin, usually meaning "down, off, away, from among, down from," but also "down to the bottom, totally" hence "completely" (intensive or completive), which is its sense in many English words.
As a Latin prefix it also had the function of undoing or reversing a verb's action, and hence it came to be used as a pure privative — "not, do the opposite of, undo" — which is its primary function as a living prefix in English, as in defrost (1895), defuse (1943), de-escalate (1964), etc. In some cases, a reduced form of dis-.
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to lean."
It forms all or part of: acclivity; anticline; clemency; client; climate; climax; cline; clinic; clinical; clino-; clitellum; clitoris; decline; declivity; enclitic; heteroclite; incline; ladder; lean (v.); lid; low (n.2) "small hill, eminence;" matroclinous; patroclinous; polyclinic; proclitic; proclivity; recline; synclinal; thermocline.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit srayati "leans," sritah "leaning;" Old Persian cay "to lean;" Lithuanian šlyti "to slope," šlieti "to lean;" Latin clinare "to lean, bend," clivus "declivity," inclinare "cause to bend," declinare "bend down, turn aside;" Greek klinein "to cause to slope, slant, incline;" Old Irish cloin "crooked, wrong;" Middle Irish cle, Welsh cledd "left," literally "slanting").
late 14c., declinacioun, in astronomy, "distance of a heavenly body from the celestial equator, measured on a great circle passing through the body and the celestial pole," from Old French declinacion (Modern French déclinaison) and directly from Latin declinationem (nominative declinatio) "a bending from (something), a bending aside; the supposed slope of the earth toward the poles; a turning away from (something), an avoiding," noun of action from past-participle stem of declinare (see decline (v.)). From c. 1400 as "a bending or sloping downward." Related: Declinational.
late 14c., originally in grammar, from French indéclinable or directly from Latin indeclinabilis "unchangeable," also in grammar, from indeclinatus "unchanged, constant," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + declinatus, from declinare "to lower; avoid, deviate; bend from, inflect" (see decline (v.)). Related: Indeclinably.