Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

go back - definition and synonyms

Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
phrasal verb
Word Forms
Close
present tense
I/you/we/theygo back
he/she/itgoes back
present participlegoing back
past tensewent back
past participlegone back
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    [intransitive] to return to a person, place, subject, or activity

    It started to rain, so we decided to go back.

    go back to:

    We didn’t think he’d go back to his wife after everything that’s happened.

    I’d like to go back to what Abby was saying just a minute ago.

    She should be well enough to go back to work on Wednesday.

    go back to doing something:

    The computer breaks down and you go back to writing things down on pieces of paper.

    go back for:

    I’d left my keys in the office and had to go back for them.

  2. 2
    [intransitive/transitive] to have existed since or for a particular time

    My interest in the subject goes back many years.

    go back to:

    Some of these houses go back to the early 19th century.

    1. a.
      [transitive] spoken if two people go back a particular period of time, they have known each other for that period of time

      We go back a long time, don’t we?

  3. 3
    [intransitive] British when schools or students go back, classes begin again after a long holiday

    When do the kids go back?

  4. 4
    [intransitive] British when the clocks go back, everyone changes the time on their clocks so that they show a time that is one hour earlier than before

    Don’t forget, the clocks go back this Sunday.

See also main entry: go

unicorn

a start-up … whose value has reached more than one billion US dollars

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

crafternoon

an afternoon full of crafts

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog