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detain - definition and synonyms


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verb [transitive] detain pronunciation in British English /dɪˈteɪn/
Word Forms
present tense
present participledetaining
past tensedetained
past participledetained
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  1. 2
    to keep someone in hospital because they are too ill to leave

    Nine people were treated in hospital and one was detained overnight.

  2. 3
    formal to delay someone who has to go somewhere

    Ms Dawson has been detained, so we will start the meeting without her.



to fall over forwards so that your face hits the ground or another surface

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the activity of exploring abandoned buildings and other manmade structures

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