from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A return to formerly enjoyed status or prosperity.
  • noun A return to popularity.
  • noun The act of making up a deficit, as in a contest or game.
  • noun A reply, especially a quick witty one; a retort.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A return (e.g. to popularity, success, etc.).
  • noun A retort or answer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun return by a celebrity to some previously successful activity
  • noun a quick reply to a question or remark (especially a witty or critical one)


Sorry, no etymologies found.


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word comeback.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • The progeny resulting from a mating of a Merino with a British longwool sheep.

    February 18, 2010

  • he . . . very quietly stated that . . . our offer had been accepted on the boat, but that if we went ahead the present owner wanted no comebacks.

    'What does that mean? "no comebacks", I asked.

    ''It means that if the survey is poor or if there are any issues that arise from the survey, we can't ask him to drop the price any further, although we can still pull out of the sale altogether,' Geoff explained.
    Marie Browne, Narrow Margins (Mid-Glamorgan: Accent Press Ltd., 2009), p. 31

    (Apparently "survey" in Br. Eng. is used a "inspection" is in US Eng., at least in the context of buying and selling houses and live-aboard boats.)

    November 3, 2015