re·​trac·​tion | \ ri-ˈtrak-shən How to pronounce retraction (audio) \

Definition of retraction

1 : an act of recanting specifically : a statement made by one retracting
2 : an act of retracting : the state of being retracted
3 : the ability to retract

Examples of retraction in a Sentence

His charges were false, and he was forced to make a retraction. the retraction of the plane's landing gear
Recent Examples on the Web Stangle later issued a retraction acknowledging his 18 million figure was inaccurate and that in moderation, eating an occasional Impossible Whopper would be unlikely to lead to any harm. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, 10 Sep. 2021 With those two paragraphs, Rolling Stone explained why its initial write-up merited a retraction. Washington Post, 8 Sep. 2021 The reluctance to embrace the movement by tech giants like Facebook, and the retraction of remote working policies from its trend setters like Yahoo, should give anyone considering remote work some pause. Ankur Modi, Forbes, 27 Sep. 2021 Since then, Reid has offered no on-air correction or retraction. Fox News, 9 Sep. 2021 The woman insisted that she was raped in a hotel room at a coastal resort town in July 2019 and that she was forced to sign the retraction 10 days later while under police questioning. Menelaos Hadjicostis, ajc, 16 Sep. 2021 The authorities, in other words, wanted to expedite the spreading of calumnies one day, only to slow down the diffusion of their retraction the next day. Washington Post, 6 Oct. 2021 A couple of hundred medical professionals have signed an online petition calling for retraction of the video and the news coverage that focused on it, including the Union-Tribune’s original story from last week. San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 Aug. 2021 The offices of Fischer, Lightfoot and Wheeler did not immediately respond to inquiries from Fox News regarding the apparent retraction of sponsor names from the resolution on the Conference of Mayor's website. Audrey Conklin, Fox News, 9 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'retraction.' 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 retraction

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of retraction was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

3 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Retraction.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for retraction



English Language Learners Definition of retraction

: a statement saying that something you said or wrote at an earlier time is not true or correct
: the act of moving something back into a larger part that usually covers it : the act of retracting something


re·​trac·​tion | \ ri-ˈtrak-shən How to pronounce retraction (audio) \

Medical Definition of retraction

: an act or instance of retracting specifically : backward or inward movement of an organ or part retraction of the nipple or skin overlying the tumor Journal of the American Medical Association


re·​trac·​tion | \ ri-ˈtrak-shən How to pronounce retraction (audio) \

Legal Definition of retraction

: an act of taking back or withdrawing retraction of a confession her retraction of the defamatory statement

More from Merriam-Webster on retraction

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for retraction

Britannica English: Translation of retraction for Arabic Speakers


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