- to take away a part, as from quality, value, or reputation (usually followed by from).
- to draw away or divert; distract: to detract another's attention from more important issues.
- Archaic. to take away (a part); abate: The dilapidated barn detracts charm from the landscape.
Origin of detract
Examples from the Web for detractor
And to simply characterize Koch as a Democratic detractor, and a Republican right-winger, would be, well, simplistic.'Tea Party Billionaire' Fires Back
September 10, 2010
Hayworth has Rush Limbaugh—not as an endorser of his candidacy, at least not yet, but as a longtime McCain detractor.The Thorn in McCain's Side
February 17, 2010
Ovid begins the poem by asking his detractor why he criticizes Ovid's verse.
Peter Saraceno has been seized because he is an enemy and detractor of the emperor.A Source Book for Mediaeval History
Oliver J. Thatcher
Let your strict silence be a significant and salutary lesson for the detractor.Fraternal Charity
Rev. Father Valuy
Such are the chief particulars composing the character of the detractor.
We may now briefly notice some of the causes which influence the detractor in his talk.
- (when intr, usually foll by from) to take away a part (of); diminishher anger detracts from her beauty
- (tr) to distract or divert
- (tr) obsolete to belittle or disparage
Word Origin and History for detractor
late 14c., from Anglo-French detractour, Old French detractor "detractor, backbiter," from Latin detractor, agent noun from detrahere (see detraction).
early 15c., from Middle French détracter, from Latin detractus, past participle of detrahere "to take down, pull down, disparage" (see detraction). Related: Detracted; detracting.