Reverse one's direction, as in We had to turn back earlier than expected. [First half of 1500s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
How to use turn back in a sentence
Looking to turn back the tide or at least hold it back for one more election, Clinton will stump in Benton County next week.Bubba Goes Back to the Briar Patch: Bill Clinton’s Arkansas Obsession | Patricia Murphy | October 2, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The European Union called for Russia to revoke its decision and turn back.
At some point, they walk away, but then turn back and the fight resumes.‘Out in the Night’ and the Redemption of the ‘Killer Lesbian Gang' | Nina Strochlic | June 21, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
A chill coursed through me, but I resisted the urge to turn back.
It turns out that only when Muhammad Ali is in a boxing ring can he, or does he choose to, turn back the clock.
Sieur de Poutrincourt got into a boat to go and head it off, and, with the help of a big dog, made it turn back whence it came.
The crew now lost courage, and affirmed that it would be advisable to turn back and wait for more favourable winds.A Woman's Journey Round the World | Ida Pfeiffer
Her heart was beating a little faster now; she half felt inclined to turn back and abandon the enterprise altogether.The Weight of the Crown | Fred M. White
I wished to turn back, but the fellow paid no attention to my desire, and continued walking towards the wood.A Woman's Journey Round the World | Ida Pfeiffer
She rode as near to the Osbornes as she thought prudent, and was about to turn back, when she saw a great cloud of smoke arising.The Courier of the Ozarks | Byron A. Dunn