throw·​back | \ ˈthrō-ˌbak How to pronounce throwback (audio) \

Definition of throwback

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one that is suggestive of or suited to an earlier time or style his manners were a throwback to a more polite era
2a : reversion to an earlier type or phase : atavism
b : an instance or product of atavistic reversion

throw back

threw back; thrown back; throwing back; throws back

Definition of throw back (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to delay the progress or advance of : check
2 : to cause to rely : make dependent they are thrown back upon … native intelligence— Michael Novak
3 : reflect

intransitive verb

: to revert to an earlier type or phase

Examples of throwback in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In San Francisco, a rare octagon house—a throwback to an architectural fad that once swept the nation—is slated to come on the market for $8.6 million. Katherine Clarke, WSJ, 20 May 2021 Another throwback to childhood made for the outdoors is a giant Jenga set. Laura Wheatman Hill,, 3 Apr. 2021 Those rules were put in place to prevent hospitals from becoming little more than large facilities for treating mentally ill people, a throwback to previous practice., 26 Mar. 2021 From a cheesy throwback to a classic pic from your most recent family vacay, choosing the perfect photo to post shouldn't be that difficult. Nathalie Kirby, House Beautiful, 23 Mar. 2021 The seven-inning doubleheaders introduced last season were gold, a throwback to my childhood when traditional doubleheaders were far more common. Star Tribune, 6 Feb. 2021 Following the premiere of the HBO Max special Friends: The Reunion on Thursday, the actress took to Instagram to share a true throwback photo that showed stars Matthew Perry and Matt LeBlanc right at the beginning of the show's run in 1994. Andrea Towers,, 29 May 2021 In honor of Mother's Day, the NBC coanchor shared a sweet throwback photo featuring her mother, Sameha, holding Hoda's brother, Adel, as she's seated next to her sister, Hala. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, 11 May 2021 On Thursday, Abby Lee Miller posted a seemingly sweet throwback photo with the former cast of Dance Moms, reminiscing about their time on the show together and questioning what life would have turned out like without it. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, 8 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Vander Meer is the only pitcher to throw back-to-back no-hitters in MLB history. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, 24 May 2021 Then get ready to throw back some brews and enjoy your evenings. Chris Hachey, BGR, 11 May 2021 Kiermaier then hustled to second when right fielder Jared Walsh was slow to throw back to the infield. Greg Beacham, Star Tribune, 5 May 2021 But after Angels shortstop José Iglesias received the ball at second, he was contacted by trailing baserunner Jonathan Davis’ wide slide, causing his throw back to first to sail into foul territory. Jack Harris, Los Angeles Times, 11 Apr. 2021 On Friday, Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell watched two candidates for the open fifth spot in the starting rotation throw back-to-back against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Charlie Goldsmith, The Enquirer, 6 Mar. 2021 The Gravels Grenache is an exciting wine: full of energy, easy to throw back, but still with a tinge of seriousness. Esther Mobley, San Francisco Chronicle, 24 Feb. 2021 The song hits its peak with layered robotic vocal harmonies that throw back to Discovery-era textures. Kat Bein, Billboard, 22 Feb. 2021 Goff made some baffling decisions, none worse than his decision to throw back across the middle of the field in the second quarter. Tim Booth,, 27 Dec. 2020

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


1883, in the meaning defined at sense 2b


1656, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2

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Time Traveler for throwback

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The first known use of throwback was in 1656

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Last Updated

14 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Throwback.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for throwback



English Language Learners Definition of throwback

: a person or thing that is similar to someone or something from the past or that is suited to an earlier time


throw·​back | \ ˈthrō-ˌbak How to pronounce throwback (audio) \

Medical Definition of throwback

1 : reversion to an earlier type or phase : atavism
2 : an instance or product of atavistic reversion

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for throwback


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