To back down
Back Back, v. i. 1. To move or go backward; as, the horse refuses to back. [1913 Webster]

2. (Naut.) To change from one quarter to another by a course opposite to that of the sun; -- used of the wind. [1913 Webster]

3. (Sporting) To stand still behind another dog which has pointed; -- said of a dog. [Eng.] [1913 Webster]

{To back and fill}, to manage the sails of a ship so that the wind strikes them alternately in front and behind, in order to keep the ship in the middle of a river or channel while the current or tide carries the vessel against the wind. Hence: (Fig.) To take opposite positions alternately; to assert and deny. [Colloq.]

{To back out}, {To back down}, to retreat or withdraw from a promise, engagement, or contest; to recede. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]

Cleon at first . . . was willing to go; but, finding that he [Nicias] was in earnest, he tried to back out. --Jowett (Thucyd. ) [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To turn down — Turn Turn (t[^u]rn), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Turned}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Turning}.] [OE. turnen, tournen, OF. tourner, torner, turner, F. tourner, LL. tornare, fr. L. tornare to turn in a lathe, to rounds off, fr. tornus a lathe, Gr. ? a turner s… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To bring down — Bring Bring, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Brought}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Bringing}.] [OE. bringen, AS. bringan; akin to OS. brengian, D. brengen, Fries. brenga, OHG. bringan, G. bringen, Goth. briggan.] 1. To convey to the place where the speaker is or is to …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To put down — Put Put, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Put}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Putting}.] [AS. potian to thrust: cf. Dan. putte to put, to put into, Fries. putje; perh. akin to W. pwtio to butt, poke, thrust; cf. also Gael. put to push, thrust, and E. potter, v. i.] 1. To …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To fall down — Fall Fall (f[add]l), v. i. [imp. {Fell} (f[e^]l); p. p. {Fallen} (f[add]l n); p. pr. & vb. n. {Falling}.] [AS. feallan; akin to D. vallen, OS. & OHG. fallan, G. fallen, Icel. Falla, Sw. falla, Dan. falde, Lith. pulti, L. fallere to deceive, Gr.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To keep down — Keep Keep (k[=e]p), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Kept} (k[e^]pt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Keeping}.] [OE. k[=e]pen, AS. c[=e]pan to keep, regard, desire, await, take, betake; cf. AS. copenere lover, OE. copnien to desire.] 1. To care; to desire. [Obs.] [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To break down — Break Break (br[=a]k), v. t. [imp. {broke} (br[=o]k), (Obs. {Brake}); p. p. {Broken} (br[=o] k n), (Obs. {Broke}); p. pr. & vb. n. {Breaking}.] [OE. breken, AS. brecan; akin to OS. brekan, D. breken, OHG. brehhan, G. brechen, Icel. braka to creak …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To throw down — Throw Throw, v. t. [imp. {Threw} (thr[udd]); p. p. {Thrown} (thr[=o]n); p. pr. & vb. n. {Throwing}.] [OE. [thorn]rowen, [thorn]rawen, to throw, to twist, AS. [thorn]r[=a]wan to twist, to whirl; akin to D. draaijen, G. drehen, OHG. dr[=a]jan, L.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To call down — Call Call (k[add]l), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Called} (k[add]ld); p. pr. & vb. n. {Calling}] [OE. callen, AS. ceallian; akin to Icel. & Sw. kalla, Dan. kalde, D. kallen to talk, prate, OHG. kall[=o]n to call; cf. Gr. ghry ein to speak, sing, Skr. gar …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To pull down — Pull Pull, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Pulled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Pulling}.] [AS. pullian; cf. LG. pulen, and Gael. peall, piol, spiol.] 1. To draw, or attempt to draw, toward one; to draw forcibly. [1913 Webster] Ne er pull your hat upon your brows.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To go down — Go Go, v. i. [imp. {Went} (w[e^]nt); p. p. {Gone} (g[o^]n; 115); p. pr. & vb. n. {Going}. Went comes from the AS, wendan. See {Wend}, v. i.] [OE. gan, gon, AS. g[=a]n, akin to D. gaan, G. gehn, gehen, OHG. g[=e]n, g[=a]n, SW. g[*a], Dan. gaae; cf …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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