backward

Definitions

  • He Went over Backwards 121
    He Went over Backwards 121
  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj backward directed or facing toward the back or rear "a backward view"
    • adj backward (used of temperament or behavior) marked by a retiring nature "a backward lover"
    • adj backward having made less than normal progress "an economically backward country"
    • adj backward retarded in intellectual development
    • adv backward in or to or toward a past time "set the clocks back an hour","never look back","lovers of the past looking fondly backward"
    • adv backward at or to or toward the back or rear "he moved back","tripped when he stepped backward","she looked rearward out the window of the car"
    • adv backward in a manner or order or direction the reverse of normal "it's easy to get the `i' and the `e' backward in words like `seize' and `siege'","the child put her jersey on backward"
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Additional illustrations & photos:

So Straight he Leaned Backward 211 So Straight he Leaned Backward 211
A woman and her backwards umbrella form a letter K A woman and her backwards umbrella form a letter K

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Emus cannot walk backwards
    • Backward Already past or gone; bygone. "And flies unconscious o'er each backward year."
    • Backward By way of reflection; reflexively.
    • Backward Directed to the back or rear; as, backward glances.
    • Backward From a better to a worse state, as from honor to shame, from religion to sin. "The work went backward ."
    • Backward In a contrary or reverse manner, way, or direction; contrarily; as, to read backwards . "We might have . . . beat them backward home."
    • Backward Late or behindhand; as, a backward season.
    • Backward Not advanced in civilization; undeveloped; as, the country or region is in a backward state.
    • Backward Not well advanced in learning; not quick of apprehension; dull; inapt; as, a backward child. "The backward learner."
    • Backward On the back, or with the back downward. "Thou wilt fall backward ."
    • n Backward The state behind or past. "In the dark backward and abysm of time."
    • v. t Backward To keep back; to hinder.
    • Backward Toward the back; toward the rear; as, to throw the arms backward .
    • Backward Toward, or in, past time or events; ago. "Some reigns backward ."
    • Backward Unwilling; averse; reluctant; hesitating; loath. "For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves."
    • Backward With the back in advance or foremost; as, to ride backward .
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Levan, which is located in Utah, got its name from "navel" which is levan spelt backwards. It was named this because it is in the center of Utah
    • backward In the direction of the back: as, to throw the arms backward.
    • backward With the back first in the direction of motion: as, to walk backward; to fall backward.
    • backward In the direction from which one has come; toward that which is or has been left behind: as, he glanced backward.
    • backward Toward bygone times or events; toward that which is past in time: as, to look backward to the last century.
    • backward In or by reflection; reflexively.
    • backward In time past; ago.
    • backward In an opposite or contrary direction.
    • backward In an opposite or reverse order; from the end toward the beginning; in an order contrary to the natural order: as, to read or spell backward; hence, perversely; in a wrong or perverse manner.
    • backward From a better to a worse state; retrogressively.
    • backward Directed to the back or rear: as, “a backward look,”
    • backward Reversed; returning; directed to or toward the original starting-point: as, a backward movement or journey.
    • backward Done in reverse order; done in an order contrary to the natural order, as in repeating a sentence from the end to the beginning.
    • backward Being in, or placed at, the back.
    • backward Slow; sluggish; unprogressive; unadvanced; behind in progress: as, a backward learner.
    • backward Late; behind in time; coming after something else, or after the usual time: as, backward fruits; the season is backward.
    • backward Holding back; averse; reluctant; hesitating.
    • backward Timid; bashful; retiring in disposition; modest.
    • backward Reaching back into the past; already past.
    • n backward The things or state behind or past.
    • backward To obstruct; keep back; retard; delay.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Unlike other four legged mammals, kangaroos cannot walk backwards
    • adv Backward bak′ward towards the back: on the back: towards the past: from a better to a worse state: in a direction opposite to the normal—also Back′wards
    • adj Backward keeping back: unwilling: slow: late: dull or stupid
    • n Backward the past portion of time
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Quotations

  • Marshall Mcluhan
    Marshall%20Mcluhan
    “Diaper backward spells repaid. Think about it.”
  • Thomas H. Huxley
    Thomas%20H.%20Huxley
    “The medieval university looked backwards; it professed to be a storehouse of old knowledge. The modern university looks forward, and is a factory of new knowledge.”
  • Thomas Carlyle
    Thomas%20Carlyle
    “A person with half volition goes backwards and forwards, but makes no progress on even the smoothest of roads.”
  • Winston Churchill
    Winston%20Churchill
    “The nose of the bulldog has been slanted backwards so that he can breathe without letting go.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “Evil spelled backward is live.”
  • Amar Gopal Bose
    Amar Gopal Bose
    “No one ever won a chess game by betting on each move. Sometimes you have to move backward to get a step forward.”

Idioms

Bend over backwards - If someone bends over backwards, they do everything they can to help someone.
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Back, adv. + -ward,

Usage

In literature:

Trampy took a step backward.
"The Bill-Toppers" by Andre Castaigne
The bear moved slowly backward, still pushing her cub.
"Panther Eye" by Roy J. Snell
Without appearing to cast a backward thought upon the chops, she buttered herself a piece of toast.
"A Sheaf of Corn" by Mary E. Mann
The small grey feathers of her exquisitely shaped fan waved gently backwards and forwards.
"Anna the Adventuress" by E. Phillips Oppenheim
Circle arms forward and backward slowly, energize backward motion, muscles tense; forward motion with muscles relaxed.
"Manual of Military Training" by James A. Moss
It must therefore be turned in a direction that may be called backward, the revolutions to the left instead of to the right.
"The Repairing & Restoration of Violins" by Horace Petherick
The two men stepped out and without a backward glance slowly disappeared into the fog.
"El Diablo" by Brayton Norton
The elbow points laterally and backwards, and the upper arm is shortened.
"Manual of Surgery Volume Second: Extremities--Head--Neck. Sixth Edition." by Alexander Miles
With all his strength, Simon yanked Sordello off the Armenian and threw him backward.
"The Saracen: Land of the Infidel" by Robert Shea
As the Frank fell backward from his horse, Daoud saw that it was Simon de Gobignon.
"The Saracen: The Holy War" by Robert Shea
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In poetry:

Backward blowing
Blizzards of memory
Flatten out
The genealogies.
"Gospel" by Patrick Kavanagh
now, isn't that fragrant
Sir, isn't that knowing
w/a wayward careless
backward glance
"The New Creatures" by James Douglas Morrison
Summer shall see the bird
backward returning;
never shall there be heard
those, who went yearning.
"The Waradgery Tribe" by Dame Mary Gilmore DBE
It was a time for a dreamer
To have no thoughts of men,
To let the fancy go backward
To the early time again.
"In The Light Of Boyhood" by Alexander Anderson
So from the desert of my fate
I gaze across the past;
Forever on life's dial-plate
The shade is backward cast!
"The Knight of St. John" by John Greenleaf Whittier
Cushy cow has curly horns,
Delicate, tipped with brown.
Swifter her hoofs fly backward
Than any bull's in town.
"Cushy Cow" by Laura Benet

In news:

Is Moving Backward on Jobs.
A variety of technologies are emerging to move explosive detection backwards , away from the threat, some up to 50 meters or more.
Colts take big step backward in loss to Jets.
Forwards or backwards , which will it be for Minnesota.
Obama's big move backward .
Broward County Commission sliding backward on ethics.
At least, it looks backward when you're the backwards running man.
Ravens offensive line takes a step backward .
Most get their economic news from the nightly network shows, but the people who produce these programs bend over backwards to report as little as possible about the levels of economic deprivation that characterize Obama's presidency.
NHL takes a step backward .
Backward and forward: The real decision of 2012.
Keeper scores with backward header.
Op-ed column: Backward in Ballston.
Ending fee would be 'step backward '.
In Tampa, GOP bent over backward to show diversity.
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In science:

R1 The Palm measures of R1 ∞ described in Subsection A.1 have a representation in terms of a backward tree which we recall here.
Occupation Time Fluctuations in Branching Systems
In fact, her proof in [19, Sec. 4] goes backwards. (This is also how the author originally rediscovered Jackson’s proof.) She started with the 1ψ1 summation (3.2) and equated coefficients of z n on both sides.
A simple proof of Bailey's very-well-poised 6-psi-6 summation
Jackson’s proof to a “method” is to read the proof backwards, as displayed above.
A simple proof of Bailey's very-well-poised 6-psi-6 summation
The great number of researches in the area of microwave electronics resulted in the traveling wave tube (TWT), backward-wave oscillator (BWO), orotrons and so on.
Influence of guiding magnetic field on emission of stimulated photons in generators utilizing periodic slow-wave structures
This is essentially the Pitman-Koopman theorem used backwards; given any data the MaxEnt distribution having exponential form, in effect creates a model for which those data would have been sufficient statistics.
Minimax Entropy and Maximum Likelihood. Complementarity of tasks, identity of solutions
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