retreat Definition

  • 1the act of moving back or withdrawing
  • 2a quiet or secluded place in which one can rest and relax
  • 3a period of time for meditation, prayer, or study

Using retreat: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "retreat" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    The army was forced to make a retreat.

  • Example

    She went on a yoga retreat to recharge her batteries.

  • Example

    The monastery offers a weekend retreat for spiritual reflection.

  • Example

    He retreated to his cabin in the woods to escape the noise of the city.

retreat Synonyms and Antonyms

Synonyms for retreat

Antonyms for retreat

Idioms Using retreat

  • to signal the order to withdraw from a position


    The captain sounded the retreat, and the soldiers began to fall back.

  • to become introspective and withdrawn


    After the breakup, he retreated into himself and refused to talk to anyone.

  • to go back to the planning stage after a failed attempt


    The project failed, so we had to retreat to the drawing board and come up with a new plan.

Phrases with retreat

  • to leave a place quickly and quietly


    As soon as the police arrived, the thieves beat a hasty retreat.

  • a withdrawal from a position for tactical reasons


    The general ordered a strategic retreat to regroup his troops.

  • a mental state of withdrawal from the demands of the real world


    After the death of her husband, she retreated from reality and spent most of her days lost in thought.

Origins of retreat

from Old French 'retret', meaning 'a place of withdrawal'


Summary: retreat in Brief

The term 'retreat' [rɪˈtriːt] refers to the act of moving back or withdrawing, as well as a quiet or secluded place for rest and relaxation. It can also refer to a period of time for meditation, prayer, or study. Examples include 'The army was forced to make a retreat,' and 'She went on a yoga retreat to recharge her batteries.' Idioms like 'sound the retreat' denote signaling the order to withdraw, while 'retreat into oneself' means becoming introspective and withdrawn.

How do native speakers use this expression?