Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act of retaining.
  • n. The condition of being retained.
  • n. Capacity or power of retaining.
  • n. An ability to recall or recognize what has been learned or experienced; memory.
  • n. Something retained.
  • n. Involuntary withholding of bodily wastes or secretions that are normally eliminated.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The act of retaining or something retained
  • n. The act or power of remembering things
  • n. A memory, what is retained in the mind
  • n. The involuntary withholding of urine and faeces

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of retaining, or the state of being ratined.
  • n. The power of retaining; retentiveness.
  • n. That which contains something, as a tablet; a ���� of preserving impressions.
  • n. The act of withholding; retraint; reserve.
  • n. Place of custody or confinement.
  • n. The right of withholding a debt, or of retaining property until a debt due to the person claiming the right be duly paid; a lien.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of retaining or keeping back; restraint; reserve.
  • n. The act of retaining or holding as one's own; continued possession or ownership.
  • n. Continuance or perseverance, as in the use or practice of anything; preservation.
  • n. The act of retaining or keeping in mind; especially, that activity of the mind by which it retains ideas; the retentive faculty: often used as synonymous with memory.
  • n. Hence That which retains impressions, as a tablet.
  • n. In medicine:
  • n. The power of retaining, as in the stomach or bladder; inability to void or discharge: as, the retention of food or medicine by the stomach; retention of urine.
  • n. Hence— A morbid accumulation of solid or liquid matter in vessels of the body or cavities intended to contain it only for a time.
  • n. The state of being confined; custody; confinement.
  • n. In Scots law, a lien; the right of withholding a debt or retaining property until a debt due to the person claiming this right is duly paid.
  • n. Synonyms Reservation, preservation. See keep.

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

  • n. the power of retaining and recalling past experience
  • n. the power of retaining liquid
  • n. the act of retaining something

Etymologies

Middle English retencioun, from Old French retention, from Latin retentiō, retentiōn-, from retentus, past participle of retinēre, to retain; see retain.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English retencioun, from Latin retentiō, from retentus, the perfect passive participle of retineō ("retain") (from re- ("back, again") + teneō ("hold, keep")). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The most critical step in retention is the analysis in which an informed judgment is made as to whether or not the communications or other data seized is foreign intelligence information.

    Minimize Me!

  • In the third quarter, when the financing company was hard hit by the freeze in credit markets, it paid executives $28 million in what it called retention payments to make up for the shriveled value of their long-term incentive plans.

    TARP Puts the Brakes on GMAC Executives' Pay

  • Data retention is a crucial element of surveillance.

    Balkinization

  • On top of that, a city official tells CNN, Houston streets are designed to be what he calls retention ponds, places to hold water when drainage ditches and channels overflow so that homes and other buildings won't get flooded.

    CNN Transcript Sep 22, 2005

  • The true reason in my mind SL hasnt had a higher retention is the absolutly confusing orientation centre starts award program most get stuck in orientation forever, then when you do pass they drop you in a welcome centre where not one linden employee is present, many in the community go there to help and of course to increase traffic and knowledge of thier places but honestly secondlife needs to hold the newbies hands a little better in the beginning and I bet you more than 1/2 that usualy quit would stay.

    Philip Rosedale Answers Your Second Life Questions - Freakonomics Blog - NYTimes.com

  • They are furious over $165 million in retention bonuses paid last Friday by federal welfare client AIG.

    The Obama Market

  • Layoff and retention is based on seniority, not on performance.

    Council Gives 12 Percent Raises to Five Managers « PubliCola

  • Chicks and water retention is a hellish confounding business.

    Cheeseburger Gothic » Burger Lite 5 March

  • If students do self-test, it is often to assess what they've learned, rather than to enhance their long-term retention of the material.

    How to maximise your memory

  • There is evidence that the more an item is rehearsed, the greater the likelihood of long-term retention.

    How to maximise your memory

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Comments

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  • "The term used by online marketers to describe the efforts of a company to keep their customer or client from defecting to the competition." --Webopedia

    June 26, 2009