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to break or fall down suddenly Those wooden steps are old, and I'm afraid one of them will give way, so we need to replace them this weekend.
1. Retreat or withdraw, as in The army gave way before the enemy. [Early 1500s]
2. Yield the right of way; also, relinquish ascendancy, as in The cars must give way to the parade, or The children were called inside as day gave way slowly to night. [Early 1700s]
3. Collapse, fail, break down, as in The ladder gave way, or His health gave way under the strain. [Mid-1600s]
4. Also, give way to. Yield to urging or demand, as in At the last minute he gave way and avoided a filibuster, or The owners gave way to their demands for a pay increase. [Mid-1700s]
5. Also, give way to. Abandon oneself, lose self-control, as in She gave way to hysteria, or Don't give way to despair. [First half of 1800s]
1. To cease resisting or holding: The roof gave way under the weight of the snow, and the whole building collapsed.
2. To yield, make space for, or accommodate something: The old computer system must give way in order to meet the new hardware requirements.
1. To retreat or withdraw.
2. To yield the right of way: gave way to an oncoming car.
3. To relinquish ascendancy or position: as day gives way slowly to night.
4. To collapse from or as if from physical pressure: The ladder gave way.
5. To yield to urging or demand; give in.
6. To abandon oneself: give way to hysteria.