from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- transitive v. To keep from proceeding; delay or retard.
- transitive v. To keep in custody or temporary confinement: The police detained several suspects for questioning. The disruptive students were detained after school until their parents had been notified.
- transitive v. Obsolete To retain or withhold (payment or property, for example).
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- v. Keep (someone) from proceeding by holding them back or making claims on their attention.
- v. To put under custody.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- transitive v. To keep back or from; to withhold.
- transitive v. To restrain from proceeding; to stay or stop; to delay.
- transitive v. To hold or keep in custody.
- n. Detention.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To keep back or away; withhold; specifically, to keep or retain unjustly.
- To keep or restrain from proceeding; stay or stop: as, we were detained by the rain.
- In law, to hold in custody.
- n. Detention.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. deprive of freedom; take into confinement
- v. stop or halt
- v. cause to be slowed down or delayed
Middle English deteinen, from Old French detenir, from Vulgar Latin *dētenīre, from Latin dētinēre : dē-, de- + tenēre, to hold; see ten- in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)