re·​gres·​sion | \ ri-ˈgre-shən How to pronounce regression (audio) \

Definition of regression

1 : the act or an instance of regressing
2 : a trend or shift toward a lower or less perfect state: such as
a : progressive decline of a manifestation of disease
b(1) : gradual loss of differentiation and function by a body part especially as a physiological change accompanying aging
(2) : gradual loss of memories and acquired skills
c : reversion to an earlier mental or behavioral level
d : a functional relationship between two or more correlated variables that is often empirically determined from data and is used especially to predict values of one variable when given values of the others the regression of y on x is linear specifically : a function that yields the mean value of a random variable under the condition that one or more independent variables have specified values
3 : retrograde motion

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Synonyms & Antonyms for regression



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Examples of regression in a Sentence

the regression to really childish behavior that boys often undergo when put in large groups
Recent Examples on the Web Wentz is now in limbo thanks to the team’s overall regression around him. Evan Sidery, Forbes, 1 Oct. 2021 Access to an online museum commemorating the Tiananmen Square massacre appeared to be blocked in Hong Kong, the latest regression for Internet freedoms and a strike against a symbol of what distinguished the city from mainland China. Washington Post, 1 Oct. 2021 The Steelers enter 2021 with tepid expectations, given quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s late-career decline and regression expected for one of the league’s best defenses. C.j. Doon,, 12 Sep. 2021 The result: social regression masquerading as racial progress. Justin Phillips, San Francisco Chronicle, 5 Sep. 2021 That's a steep regression from the Cardinals' defense's dominant first half performance in their Week 1 rout of the the Tennessee Titans. Dana Scott, The Arizona Republic, 23 Sep. 2021 Arguably the worst part of it was the regression of their franchise quarterback, who tumbled to second-last in the NFL with a 78.8 rating and finished second in the league behind Jameis Winston with 21 interceptions. cleveland, 20 Aug. 2021 Eventually the winning has to stop and a regression has to start. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, 6 Sep. 2021 The Minnesota Vikings spent the offseason working to rebuild a defense that had a major regression in 2020, restocking the secondary with cornerbacks Patrick Peterson and Bashaud Breeland. Brad Biggs,, 4 Sep. 2021

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

1583, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for regression

Time Traveler

The first known use of regression was in 1583

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Dictionary Entries Near regression



regression analysis

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Statistics for regression

Last Updated

12 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Regression.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for regression


re·​gres·​sion | \ ri-ˈgresh-ən How to pronounce regression (audio) \

Medical Definition of regression

: a trend or shift toward a lower, less severe, or less perfect state: as
a : progressive decline (as in size or severity) of a manifestation of disease tumor regression following radiation
b(1) : a gradual loss of differentiation and function by a body part especially as a physiological change accompanying aging menopausal regression of the ovaries
(2) : gradual loss (as in old age) of memories and acquired skills
c : reversion to an earlier mental or behavioral level or to an earlier stage of psychosexual development in response to organismic stress or to suggestion a protective regression towards childhood— Havelock Ellis

More from Merriam-Webster on regression

Nglish: Translation of regression for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of regression for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about regression


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