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

  • noun The act, process, duration, or an instance of recovering.
  • noun A return to a normal or healthy condition.
  • noun The act of obtaining usable substances from unusable sources.
  • idiom (in recovery) In the process of participating in a group or program providing treatment and support for a longstanding psychological or behavioral problem, such as abuse, addiction, grief, or trauma.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The act or power of recovering, regaining, retaking, conquering again, or obtaining renewed possession: as, to offer a reward for the recovery of stolen goods.
  • noun Restoration from a bad to a good condition; especially, restoration from sickness, faintness, or the like; also, restoration from low condition or misfortune.
  • noun Attainment; reaching.
  • noun In law, the obtaining of right to something by a verdict or judgment of court from an opposing party in a suit: as, the recovery of debt, damages, and costs by a plaintiff; the recovery of costs by a defendant; the recovery of land in ejectment. Compare fine, n., 3.
  • noun In fencing, the return of the fencer to his original position “on guard” after extending himself in the lunge (which see).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act of recovering, regaining, or retaking possession.
  • noun Restoration from sickness, weakness, faintness, or the like; restoration from a condition of mistortune, of fright, etc.
  • noun (Law) The obtaining in a suit at law of a right to something by a verdict and judgment of court.
  • noun obsolete The getting, or gaining, of something not previously had.
  • noun In rowing, the act of regaining the proper position for making a new stroke.
  • noun Act of regaining the natural position after curtseying.
  • noun (Fencing, Sparring, etc.) Act of regaining the position of guard after making an attack.
  • noun (Law) a species of common assurance or mode of conveying lands by matter of record, through the forms of an action at law, formerly in frequent use, but now abolished or obsolete, both in England and America.

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

  • noun The act or process of regaining or repossession of something lost.
  • noun A return to normal health.
  • noun A return to former status.
  • noun Renewed growth after a slump (economy).

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

  • noun the act of regaining or saving something lost (or in danger of becoming lost)
  • noun return to an original state
  • noun gradual healing (through rest) after sickness or injury


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • I have no doubt that Obama will accept responsibility for the jobs numbers, BUT we are still in recovery from the disaster that was GWBush — recall Bush was on autopilot for the last year of his presidency when he saw that his miserable legacy was already written.

    Think Progress » ThinkFast: January 8, 2010 2010

  • One of the tricks I picked up in recovery is that my head can be a very dangerous neighborhood, I know better than to go there alone and unarmed.

    Habiiti Dawo Ga'an, Habi'do'atiil 2009

  • The first step in recovery is to admit your addiction ...

    Sen. Sessions is all about the crack cocaine (Blog for Democracy) 2009

  • One of the tricks I picked up in recovery is that my head can be a very dangerous neighborhood, I know better than to go there alone and unarmed.

    Archive 2009-04-01 2009

  • In India, the term recovery agent or debt collector throws up chilling images of unnerving phone calls, bounces landing up at the door, goons intercepting your car at a traffic signal and throwing you off as they repossess in mid traffic and all of that.

    The Recovery Agent Shantanud 2008

  • If the people aren't recovering, what does the word recovery mean?

    unknown title 2011

  • If the people aren't recovering, what does the word recovery mean? News Victoria Pynchon 2011

  • I think we are starting to get to a point and I - I use the term recovery, of the real estate markets.

    EastGroup CEO Discusses Q3 2010 Results - Earnings Call Transcript -- Seeking Alpha 2010

  • And when you use the word "recovery," now I have to start wondering whether this is really a recovery at all that we're in right now.

    The Road to Downgrade 2011

  • I hope that your recovery is a speedy one. cody says:

    DELUGE (Part 28) – Brian Keene 2009

  • All that really means is that Amazon itself doesn’t send anything to a landfill, but many returns obviously get there anyway, and some avoid it only by being diverted to what the company described to CNBC as “energy recovery,” a euphemism for burning in a furnace.

    What Happens to All the Stuff We Return? Condé Nast 2023


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  • State associated with not drinking or using drugs or ending some negative habit on purpose.

    June 29, 2008