detention

noun
de·​ten·​tion | \ di-ˈten-chən How to pronounce detention (audio) \

Definition of detention

1 : the act or fact of detaining or holding back especially : a holding in custody
2 : the state of being detained especially : a period of temporary custody prior to disposition by a court

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Examples of detention in a Sentence

the detention of suspected terrorists The jail is only used for brief detentions. They both got three detentions this year. He got detention for being late to class.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Meanwhile, the move to shift $271 million allocated for disaster aid efforts and other initiatives to immigrant detention centers and border enforcement is perhaps the least surprising of Trump’s gyrations last week. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Another Trump whirlwind week on immigration and the border," 1 Sep. 2019 The officials said the airstrikes targeted a university in the city of Dhamar, which the rebels, known as Houthis, use as a detention center. Samy Magdy, BostonGlobe.com, "Yemeni officials: Saudi-led airstrikes kill dozens in prison," 1 Sep. 2019 The virus sickened 898 adult migrants and 33 detention center staffers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in its report Thursday. Washington Post, "Mumps sickens hundreds of detained migrants in 19 states," 31 Aug. 2019 Ashutosh Agnihotri, a senior official in Assam's Home and Political Department, told CNN that no one would be sent to a detention center during the legal process. Helen Regan And Manveena Suri, CNN, "Millions fear they will be left stateless as India publishes citizenship register," 30 Aug. 2019 The crowding in the detention centers is self-evident, and the physical and emotional conditions that migrants endure there and on their journeys—hunger, dehydration, filth, stress, sleep deprivation, and anguish—are known immunological dampers. Wired, "Why Denying Migrants Flu Shots Is a Dangerous, Foolish Move," 28 Aug. 2019 California does not have any detention centers that house migrant families. NBC News, "States sue over rollback of child immigrant protections," 26 Aug. 2019 But the humanitarian outcry over the Trump’s immigration policies and inhumane conditions at private border detention centers has caused a series of major banks to announce they will no longer provide funding to the companies. Elise Schmelzer, The Denver Post, "With growing opposition and slowing prison population growth, what is the future for private prison companies in Colorado?," 25 Aug. 2019 The government currently operates three family detention centers that can hold a total of about 3,000 people. Fox News, "Six-month-old girl in critical condition after father brings her across border illegally, officials say," 25 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'detention.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of detention

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for detention

Middle English detencion, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin detention-, detentio, from detinēre to detain

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Statistics for detention

Last Updated

5 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for detention

The first known use of detention was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for detention

detention

noun

English Language Learners Definition of detention

: the act of keeping someone in a prison or similar place
: the state of being kept in a prison or similar place
: a punishment in which a student is required to stay at school after the rest of the students have left

detention

noun
de·​ten·​tion | \ di-ˈten-chən How to pronounce detention (audio) \

Kids Definition of detention

1 : the act of holding back or delaying : the condition of being held or delayed The prisoner was held in detention before trial.
2 : the punishment of being kept after school

detention

noun
de·​ten·​tion

Legal Definition of detention

1 : the act or fact of detaining or holding back especially : a holding in custody
2 : the state of being detained especially : a period of temporary custody prior to a trial or hearing — see also preventive detention

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Comments on detention

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