English

 
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Etymology

From Middle English, from Anglo-Norman or Latin, from Anglo-Norman retarder, from Latin retardāre (to retard), from re- + tardus (slow)

Pronunciation

Noun (delay sense), verb
  • (UK, US) IPA(key): /ɹɪˈtɑː(ɹ)d/
  • Rhymes: -ɑː(ɹ)d
  • (file)
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Noun (offensive slang sense)

Noun

retard (plural retards)

  1. Retardation; delay.
  2. (music) A slowing down of the tempo; a ritardando.
  3. (offensive, dated) A person with mental retardation.
    The retard in our class needs special help.
  4. (informal, offensive) An extremely stupid person, or one who is slow to learn.

Usage notes

Through the euphemism treadmill, the term retard (which originated as a neutral substitute for the terms that had previously designated those with disabilities, namely idiot, imbecile, and moron) has come to be considered offensive; see Wikipedia for more. In a 2003 survey by the BBC, retard was voted the most offensive word relating to disability, followed by spastic.[1]

Synonyms

Derived terms

Translations

Verb

retard (third-person singular simple present retards, present participle retarding, simple past and past participle retarded)

  1. (transitive) To keep delaying; to continue to hinder; to prevent from progress
    retard the march of an army
    retard the motion of a ship
    Synonyms: impede, hinder, hold up
  2. (transitive) To put off; to postpone.
    to retard the attacks of old age
    to retard a rupture between nations
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To be slow or dilatory to perform (something).
  4. (intransitive) To decelerate; to slow down.
  5. (intransitive, obsolete) To stay back.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Thomas Browne to this entry?)

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Translations

References

  1. ^ “BBC worst word vote”, in BBC - Ouch! Disability magazine[1], accessed 20 March 2007, archived from the original on 20 March 2007

Anagrams


French

Etymology

From the verb retarder

Pronunciation

Noun

retard m (plural retards)

  1. delay

Derived terms

Further reading

Anagrams