Definitions

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

  • intransitive verb To spring back, especially to resume a former position or structure after being stretched or compressed.
  • intransitive verb To draw back; recoil.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To start back; recede, as from a purpose; recoil.
  • To shrink, recoil, or retreat from something.
  • To recoil or rebound; return to its original form or position, as an elastic body.

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

  • intransitive verb To start back; to recoil; to recede from a purpose.

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

  • verb To start back; to recoil; to recede from a purpose.
  • verb To spring back; rebound; resume the original form or position, as an elastic body.

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

  • verb pull out from an agreement, contract, statement, etc.
  • verb spring back; spring away from an impact
  • verb formally reject or disavow a formerly held belief, usually under pressure
  • verb return to the original position or state after being stretched or compressed

Etymologies

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

[Obsolete French resilir, from Latin resilīre, to leap back : re-, re- + salīre, to leap; see sel- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Latin resiliō ("spring back") through French resilir; from re (back) + saliō ("I jump").

Examples

  • Fourthly nothing I have read or said makes me resile from the proposition which I made yesterday that we ought to withdraw from the ECHR and enact a new progressive and modern British Bill of Rights which reflects the world in which we now live not that of 1950 when the ECHR was drawn up and which is consonant with the Common law and the British way of life.

    Archive 2007-08-19

  • Fourthly nothing I have read or said makes me resile from the proposition which I made yesterday that we ought to withdraw from the ECHR and enact a new progressive and modern British Bill of Rights which reflects the world in which we now live not that of 1950 when the ECHR was drawn up and which is consonant with the Common law and the British way of life.

    A Sense of Frustration

  • I quite like "resile" and it gives us the useful word "resilient" but haven't noticed it particularly on the BBC.

    OPEN THREAD.

  • I liked your earlier idea that the use of "resile" shows the influence of a Classical education not that I've had one!

    OPEN THREAD.

  • I've often seen "resile" used on American web-sites , even right-wing ones .

    OPEN THREAD.

  • Not really a related point, but germane to the closeness of politicians to the BBC, is the spread of the perfectly respectable word "resile" meaning 'recoil' - a word unrecognised by Microsoft Word.

    OPEN THREAD.

  • MPs, especially Labour MPs, are refusing to "resile" all the time.

    OPEN THREAD.

  • Likely to make them reflect, perhaps to resile from their stories.

    Diary

  • Both Australia and New Zealand have always made the point that, whilst we do not propose to resile in any manner or form from the strong view we have about the essential need for Fiji to return to democracy, we've also always made the point that there's a need to have a dialogue.

    Joint Press Conference with Foreign Minister Stephen Smith and New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully

  • One report suggests former party president Simon Hughes's office has received 4,000 emails telling him his party cannot resile on electoral reform.

    Labour prepares to pounce if Liberal Democrat-Conservative coalition talks fail

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