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

  • n. A review, survey, or contemplation of things in the past.
  • intransitive v. To contemplate the past.
  • intransitive v. To refer back.
  • transitive v. To look back on or contemplate (things past).
  • idiom in retrospect Looking backward or reviewing the past.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. consideration of past times
  • v. To look or refer back to; to reflect on

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A looking back on things past; view or contemplation of the past.
  • intransitive v. To look backward; hence, to affect or concern what is past.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To look back upon; consider retrospectively.
  • n. The act of looking backward; contemplation or consideration of the past; hence, a review or survey of past events.
  • n. Hence That to which one looks back; the past; a past event or consideration.

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

  • v. look back upon (a period of time, sequence of events); remember
  • n. contemplation of things past


From Latin *retrōspectus, past participle of retrōspicere, to look back at : retrō-, retro- + specere, to look at; see spek- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin retrōspectum, from retrōspicio ("to look back at"). (Wiktionary)


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