setback

noun set·back \ ˈset-ˌbak \
|Updated on: 15 Jun 2018

Definition of setback

1 : a checking of progress
3 : 4pitch 7
4 : a placing of a face of a building on a line some distance to the rear of the building line or of the wall below; also : the area produced by a setback
5 : automatic scheduled adjustment to a lower temperature setting of a thermostat
6 : the distance of a structure or other feature (such as a well or septic system) from the property line or other feature

Examples of setback in a Sentence

  1. Despite some early setbacks, they eventually became a successful company.

  2. the colonists persevered despite suffering setbacks that would have discouraged lesser souls

Recent Examples of setback from the Web

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

First Known Use of setback

1674

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
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set back

verb

Definition of set back

1 : to slow the progress of : hinder, delay
2 : cost
  • a new suit will set you back $200

First Known Use of set back

1600

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

SETBACK Defined for English Language Learners

setback

Definition of setback for English Language Learners

  • : a problem that makes progress more difficult or success less likely


SETBACK Defined for Kids

setback

noun set·back \ ˈset-ˌbak \

Definition of setback for Students

: a slowing of progress : a temporary defeat
  • Despite several setbacks we finished on schedule.


Seen and Heard

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