to go or come back, as to a former place, position, or state: to return from abroad;to return to public office;to return to work.
to revert to a former owner: The money I gave him returns to me in the event of his death.
to revert or recur, as in thought, discourse, etc.: He returned to his story.
to make a reply or retort: She returned with a witty sally.
to put, bring, take, give, or send back to the original place, position, etc.: to return a book to a shelf;to return a child to her mother;to return the switch to off position.
to send or give back in reciprocation, recompense, or requital: to return evil for good.
to reciprocate, repay, or react to (something sent, given, done, etc.) with something similar: to return the enemy's fire;to return a favor.
to give to a judge or official (a statement or a writ of actions done).
to render (a verdict, decision, etc.).
to reflect (light, sound, etc.).
to yield (a profit, revenue, etc.), as in return for labor, expenditure, or investment.
to report or announce officially: to return a list of members.
to elect, as to a legislative body: The voters returned him to office by a landslide.
Military. to put (a weapon) back into its holder.
Cards. to respond to (a suit led) by a similar lead: She returned diamonds.
to turn back or in the reverse direction, as a served ball in tennis.
Chiefly Architecture. to cause to turn or proceed in a different direction from the previous line of direction; reverse: to return a cornice at each end of a façade.
the act or fact of returning as by going or coming back or bringing, sending, or giving back: the return of the Jews from the Diaspora;We should appreciate your return of the book immediately.
a recurrence: the return of the moon each month.
reciprocation, repayment, or requital: profits in return for outlay.
response or reply.
a person or thing that is returned: returns of mill goods.
the gain realized on an exchange of goods.
Often returns . a yield or profit, as from labor, land, business, or investment: He received a quick return on his money.
Usually returns . an official or unofficial report on a count of votes, candidates elected, etc.: election returns.
Chiefly British. return ticket (def. 2).
the continuation of a molding, projection, etc., in a different direction.
a side or part that falls away from the front of any straight or flat member or area.
a tablelike extension attached at a right angle to a desk at typing height, for holding a typewriter, computer, etc.
a key or lever on a typewriter or other business machine that returns the carriage to the extreme right, or the typing element to the extreme left, for the beginning of a new line.
Computers. See under carriage return (def. 2).
the act of returning a ball.
the ball that is returned.
Football. a runback of a kick, intercepted pass, or fumble recovery.
Economics. yield per unit as compared to the cost per unit involved in a specific industrial process.
the bringing or sending back of various documents, such as a writ, summons, or subpoena, with a brief written report usually endorsed upon it, by a sheriff, to the court from which it issued.
a certified document by a great variety of officers, as assessors, collectors, and election officers.
the report or certificate endorsed in such documents.
Cards. a lead that responds to a partner's lead.
Theater. a flat or drapery parallel to the tormentor for masking the offstage area and often completing the downstage part of a set.
merchandise shipped back to a supplier from a retailer or distributor as unsold or unsalable.
merchandise returned to a retailer by a consumer.
of or relating to a return or returning: a return trip.
sent, given, or done in return: a return shot.
done or occurring again: a return engagement of the opera.
noting a person or thing that is returned or returning to a place: return cargo.
changing in direction; doubling or returning on itself: a return twist in a road.
used for returning, recirculating, etc.: the return road;a return pipe.
(of a game) played in order to provide the loser of an earlier game with the opportunity to win from the same opponent: return match.
adequate, necessary, or provided to enable the return of a mailed package or letter to its sender: return postage guaranteed;return address;return envelope.
- non·re·turn, adjective
- pre·re·turn, noun, verb (used without object)
- un·re·turned, adjective
- un·re·turn·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use return in a sentence
The third and fourth sets I just served and couldn’t do much on the return … and it worked, it worked well.Novak Djokovic’s five-set battle at Australian Open started with fans and ended without them | Matt Bonesteel | February 12, 2021 | Washington Post
This new-age technology saves your time and spends while improving your returns on investment.Five ways to use machine learning in digital marketing | Birbahadur Kathayat | February 12, 2021 | Search Engine Watch
In March, when the coronavirus pandemic shut down sports leagues around the world, Hoppe returned to California and worked on his game.Matthew Hoppe was a little-known American soccer player — until he reached the Bundesliga | Steven Goff | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
They returned to practice Tuesday after a week-long shutdown, but nine Buffalo players remain on the covid-19 list.The Caps are dealing with an unexpected break. They hope to use it to recover and reset. | Samantha Pell | February 10, 2021 | Washington Post
Imagine this scenario, I return to work, book between 60-120 appointments in a month, and buy a clear mask for each client.Ford’s next pandemic mission: Clear N95 masks and low-cost air filters | Hannah Denham | February 9, 2021 | Washington Post
Would the Democrats rescind those rights if they were to return to power?The Black Man Who Replaced Jefferson Davis in the Senate | Philip Dray | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
They called for peace, reconciliation, and the safe return of Father Gregorio.
Most travelers return home from trips revitalized and armed with new goals.
Nickelodeon did not return a request for comment for this story.Yep, Korra and Asami Went in the Spirit Portal and Probably Kissed | Melissa Leon | December 25, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Later studies showed that only gaining weight and the return of natural menstruation help improve bone density.
All things that are of the earth, shall return to the earth again, and all waters shall return to the sea.The Bible, Douay-Rheims Version | Various
They feel that the system has few advantages to offer in return for the cost it entails upon them.Readings in Money and Banking | Chester Arthur Phillips
It being offensive to the French, they took none of it with them on their return.Tobacco; Its History, Varieties, Culture, Manufacture and Commerce | E. R. Billings.
After the battle of the Pyramids he fell sick, and before the Syrian expedition, applied to return to France.Napoleon's Marshals | R. P. Dunn-Pattison
He decided not to return home directly; he wanted to go somewhere, but did not care to stay in Chicago.The Homesteader | Oscar Micheaux
British Dictionary definitions for return
(intr) to come back to a former place or state
(tr) to give, take, or carry back; replace or restore
(tr) to repay or recompense, esp with something of equivalent value: return the compliment
(tr) to earn or yield (profit or interest) as an income from an investment or venture
(intr) to come back or revert in thought or speech: I'll return to that later
(intr) to recur or reappear: the symptoms have returned
to answer or reply
(tr) to vote into office; elect
(tr) law (of a jury) to deliver or render (a verdict)
(tr) to send back or reflect (light or sound): the canyon returned my shout
(tr) to submit (a report, etc) about (someone or something) to someone in authority
(tr) cards to lead back (the suit led by one's partner)
(tr) ball games to hit, throw, or play (a ball) back
(tr) architect to turn (a part, decorative moulding, etc) away from its original direction
return thanks (of Christians) to say grace before a meal
the act or an instance of coming back
something that is given or sent back, esp unsatisfactory merchandise returned to the maker or supplier or a theatre ticket sent back by a purchaser for resale
the act or an instance of putting, sending, or carrying back; replacement or restoration
(often plural) the yield, revenue, or profit accruing from an investment, transaction, or venture
the act or an instance of reciprocation or repayment (esp in the phrase in return for)
a recurrence or reappearance
an official report, esp of the financial condition of a company
a form (a tax return) on which a statement concerning one's taxable income is made
the statement itself
(often plural) a statement of the votes counted at an election or poll
an answer or reply
British short for return ticket
NZ informal a second helping of food served at a table
a part of a building that forms an angle with the façade
any part of an architectural feature that forms an angle with the main part
law a report by a bailiff or other officer on the outcome of a formal document such as a claim, summons, etc, issued by a court
cards a lead of a card in the suit that one's partner has previously led
ball games the act of playing or throwing a ball back
by return or by return of post British by the next post back to the sender
many happy returns or many happy returns of the day a conventional greeting to someone on his or her birthday
the point of no return the point at which a person's commitment is irrevocable
of, relating to, or characterized by a return: a return visit; a return performance
denoting a second, reciprocated occasion: a return match
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Other Idioms and Phrases with return
In addition to the idioms beginning with return
- return the compliment
- return to the fold
- in return
- many happy returns
- point of no return
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.