from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. a return call, especially a telephone call.
  • n. the recall of an employee to work after a layoff.

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

  • n. a return call
  • n. the recall of an employee after a layoff
  • n. a request by the manufacturer of a defective product to return the product (as for replacement or repair)
  • v. summon to return
  • v. cause to be returned
  • v. return or repeat a telephone call
  • v. recall knowledge from memory; have a recollection


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • I pushed the call-back button as the doors slid closed, abandoning me in the darkness, and a shiver ran over me, one I tried to ignore.


  • Turning in the direction of the Occupy Wall Street encampment at Liberty Square, the cadence of "Left, left, left, right, left," was paused by a call-back chant of, "Hold your heads and hold them high, the 99 percent is passing by."

    Occupy Oakland general strike – as it happened

  • •So You Think You Can Dance (Fox, 8 ET/PT) leaves the auditions behind tonight and moves on to the call-back round.

    Critic's Corner Wednesday

  • I had been on my agent, Sarah Ramaker, saying that I was looking for a more challenging role that would better show my acting capabilities, and it seemed timely that this call-back came around as I was getting my head straight.

    Fallin’ Up

  • Danny Pudi's cameo as an eavesdropping Abed (returning a Community favor and realizing a plot point from a past episode) got the most attention, but I loved the Scrubs call-back of Ted Buckland's (Sam Lloyd) guest shot, as a guy who can take any song ("Love Shack," "The Trolley Song") and make it sadder.

    Matt's TV Week in Review

  • Still, if you're finding Lost especially hard to follow, that may be because you're trying too hard to follow it, to catch every call-back reference, or worse, to get ahead of where the story is going.

    'Lost' and '24': Simple titles, complex, brilliant shows

  • Well, it uses a call-back system -- remember the telephone operator?

    Iris Erlingsdottir: Cool Icelandic Phone Technology Is Hot

  • It's a wonderful death scene as Boyd turns the tables, shooting Devil in the chest a call-back to his own injury in Justified's first season and lamenting, "All I ever asked for was your loyalty, was I not entitled to that?"

    Matt's TV Week in Review

  • The girls, 6 to 12 years old, will hand over a photo, sing without instrumental accompaniment and hope for a call-back for the late 2012 production.

    Auditioning for Broadway Revival of 'Annie' Is a Hard-Knock Life

  • A simple and classic way to end humorous writing is with a call-back.

    How to Write Like a Cartoonist


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