Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
turn someone down
to issue a refusal to someone. We had to turn Joan down, even though her proposal was okay. We turned down Joan, even though her credentials were good.
turn something down
1. to bend or fold something down. He turned his coat collar down when he got inside the house. Timmy had turned down his cuffs and caught one of them in his bicycle chain.
2. to decrease the volume of something. Please turn the radio down. Can't you turn down that stereo?
3. to reject something; to deny someone's request. The board turned our request down. She had turned down John's offer of help, too.
turn down somebody/somethingalso turn somebody/something down
to refuse to accept or agree to something, or to someone's idea The bank turned down their request for a loan. Go ahead and ask her out, if you're prepared for her to turn you down.
1. Fold or double down, as in They always turn down your bed here, or Turn down your collar. [c. 1600]
2. Invert, as in She turned down her cards, or They turn down the glasses in the cupboard. [Mid-1700s]
3. Reject, fail to accept, as in They turned down his proposal, or Joe was turned down at four schools before he was finally accepted. [Late 1800s]
4. Diminish in volume, brightness, or speed. For example, Please turn down the radio; it's too loud, or They turned down the lights and began to dance. [Second half of 1800s]
1. To diminish the speed, volume, intensity, or flow of something by or as if by turning a dial: Turn down the radio, please. He turned down the TV so his roommate could study.
2. To reject or refuse someone or something: I turned down the invitation. We turned them down because their offer was too low.
3. To fold something downward: I turned my collar down. She turned down the flaps on her hat to protect her ears from the cold.
4. To prepare some bed by folding the outer covering down: The hotel maid came in and turned down the bed.