recede implies a gradual withdrawing from a forward or high fixed point in time or space.
the flood waters gradually receded
retreat implies withdrawal from a point or position reached.
retract implies drawing back from an extended position.
a cat retracting its claws
back is used with up, down, out, or off to refer to any retrograde motion.
backed off on the throttle
Some of her friends were surprised by her retreat from public life following her defeat in the election.
we made a strategic retreat when we realized that we were outnumbered Verb
When the enemy attacked, our troops were forced to retreat.
They retreated behind trees for safety.
He quickly retreated from the room.
After her defeat, she retreated from politics. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Take a cue from designer Tobias Petri, who created this minimal Alpine retreat for his family using materials found on-site.
Helena Madden, ELLE Decor, 22 Nov. 2022 This, in turn, is leading to more retreat and still more melting.
Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, 21 Nov. 2022 Though many coastal residents are reluctant to leave, inland retreat is a likely necessity for many.
Boyce Upholt, WIRED, 19 Nov. 2022 After all, the BMW M badge is synonymous not only with performance, but with luxury, and these days, notions of luxury are increasingly intertwined with the quest for tranquility, rejuvenation and meditative retreat.
Nick Czap, Robb Report, 16 Nov. 2022 Now many are seeing one another for the first time in months, after Moscow's latest retreat amid a Ukrainian counteroffensive that has retaken a pocket of territory wedged between the regional capitals of Kherson and Mykolaiv and the Black Sea.
Sam Mednick, ajc, 15 Nov. 2022 Big tech’s retreat is a blow to the office market and to many city economies, which for several years have counted on the sector’s real estate appetite to power growth.
Peter Grant, WSJ, 15 Nov. 2022 Tucked away in a cozy corner of Plymouth, Mass., is The Farmhouse, a breathtaking 10-acre retreat that Paul proudly calls his passion project.
Abigail Adams, Peoplemag, 11 Nov. 2022 In 2023 As these retreat attendees confirmed, recruitment tools and remote work are shaping the future of technical hiring.
Tigran Sloyan, Forbes, 11 Nov. 2022
Ukraine has sought to avoid costly urban fighting by surrounding cities and forcing Russians to retreat.
Ian Lovett, WSJ, 23 Oct. 2022 Then, Bilyard and others took on the police line, forcing officers to retreat.
Kathryn Watson, CBS News, 21 Oct. 2022 Ukraine’s forces made significant advances in the north last month, retaking the region of Kharkiv and forcing Putin's forces to retreat across Russian borders and deeper into the Donbas.
Caitlin Mcfall, Fox News, 14 Oct. 2022 As Ukraine's military claimed more success Thursday in forcing its enemy to retreat from Kherson-area positions, Moscow authorities promised free accommodation to Kherson residents who choose to evacuate to Russia.
Sabra Ayres, ajc, 13 Oct. 2022 As Ukraine's military claimed more success Thursday in forcing its enemy to retreat from Kherson-area positions, Moscow authorities promised free accommodation to Kherson residents who choose to evacuate to Russia.
Sabra Ayres, BostonGlobe.com, 13 Oct. 2022 As Ukraine’s military claimed more success Thursday in forcing its enemy to retreat from Kherson-area positions, Moscow authorities promised free accommodation to Kherson residents who choose to evacuate to Russia.
Sabra Ayres, Anchorage Daily News, 13 Oct. 2022 The counteroffensive has seen Russia’s frontline in the Kharkiv region collapse in less than a week, forcing thousands of its troops to retreat as Ukrainian troops have recaptured hundreds of square miles of territory, officials said.
Patrick Reevell, ABC News, 12 Sep. 2022 On Tuesday, the Russian army advanced from the south, forcing Ukrainian troops to retreat from the small town of Svitlodarsk, lest the Russians envelop the town and trap soldiers inside.New York Times, 25 May 2022 See More
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'retreat.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Middle English retret, from Anglo-French retrait, from past participle of retraire to withdraw, from Latin retrahere, from re- + trahere to draw
: a period of withdrawal for prayer, meditation, study, or instruction under a director
went on a spiritual retreat
2 of 2verb
: to make a retreat
: to slope backward
: the act or process of withdrawing from a dangerous situation
Many jurisdictions require that a person must have at least attempted a retreat, if it was possible to do so with safety, in order for a defense of self-defense to prevail. Retreat from an attack in one's own home, however, is usually not required.