count down

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count down

1. verb To count backwards from any number to zero in preparation for something (which typically happens when the countdown reaches zero). Everyone counted down the seconds and then shouted, "Happy New Year!"
2. verb By extension, to wait for something impatiently. At this point, I'm counting down the days to my due date because I'm so sick of being pregnant!
3. noun The act of counting backwards from any number to zero in preparation for something (which typically happens when the countdown reaches zero). When used as a noun, the phrase is usually written as one word. At the end of the countdown, everyone shouted, "Happy New Year!"
See also: count, down

count down

to count backwards to an event that will start when zero is reached. The project manager was counting down—getting ready for the launch of the rocket. I can still hear the captain counting down: "Five, four, three, two, one, zero, blast off!"
See also: count, down

count down

1. Count backward from any number to zero to indicate time, as in The final seconds before take off were counted down: 10, 9, 8, etc. The down in this term refers to the decreasing size of the numbers. This usage originated in connection with the firing of missiles and spacecraft and has since been broadened to such events as the roll call of states at a political convention. [c. 1950]
2. Make final preparations for an event, as in Hong Kong was counting down to the day when it became part of mainland China. This usage is derived from def. 1. [Late 1950s]
See also: count, down

count down

v.
1. To count backward to zero, especially when leading to the start of an important event: With only ten seconds until midnight, the crowd counted down to the beginning of the new year.
2. To anticipate something eagerly: The children are counting down to their summer vacation.
See also: count, down
References in periodicals archive ?
45 basis July anyway, and preferably soon, I have those outside preliminary technical counts down to the $5 area.
Government has long since ceased to matter, if not exist, but a radio station still reliably counts down the top 500 songs of all time.
The lovable Cyrus and verbose Katy pose a trivia question after which a time clock appears that counts down the seconds until the correct answer is given.
An on-screen clock counts down the minutes left before halftime's over - hopefully not before you see MTV's ``fantasy version of what would happen if Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield met for a no-holds-barred claymation fight to the finish,'' as MTV ominously puts it.
Our full product teardown reports, which include systematic sequences of teardown photos, and bills-of-material that include device counts down to the last passive and discrete component, were designed to address requirements in the electronics industry.
s Office and counts down the days, hours, minutes and seconds until the year 2000,'' said Jerri Patchett, director of the Crime Prevention and Youth Services Bureau.
com brings fans together from around the world as it counts down the days to the release of the most anticipated films of the year.