Borrowed from Middle French détracter, from Latin detractum, past participle of detraho.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /dɪˈtɹækt/
  • Rhymes: -ækt
    • (file)


detract (third-person singular simple present detracts, present participle detracting, simple past and past participle detracted)

  1. (intransitive) To take away; to withdraw or remove.
    • 2012 May 27, Nathan Rabin, “TV: Review: THE SIMPSONS (CLASSIC): “New Kid On The Block” (season 4, episode 8; originally aired 11/12/1992)”, in The Onion AV Club[1]:
      The Conan O’Brien-penned half-hour has the capacity to rip our collective hearts out the way the cute, funny bad girl next door does to Bart when she reveals that her new boyfriend is Jimbo Jones, but the show keeps shying away from genuine emotion in favor of jokes that, while overwhelmingly funny, detract from the poignancy and the emotional intimacy of the episode.
  2. (transitive) To take credit or reputation from; to defame or decry.
    • 1604, Michael Drayton, Moses in a Map of his Miracles
      That calumnious critic [] / Detracting what laboriously we do.


Derived termsEdit