Definitions

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

  • intransitive verb To withdraw from one's occupation or position, especially upon reaching a certain age; stop working.
  • intransitive verb To move away or withdraw, as for rest or seclusion.
  • intransitive verb To fall back or retreat, as from battle.
  • intransitive verb To go to bed.
  • intransitive verb To cause to withdraw from one's usual field of activity.
  • intransitive verb To withdraw from use or active service.
  • intransitive verb To take out of circulation.
  • intransitive verb To pay off.
  • intransitive verb To lead (troops, for example) away from action; withdraw.
  • intransitive verb To put out (a batter).
  • intransitive verb To cause (the opposing team) to end a turn at bat.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • In the law of negotiable instruments: To take up (a bill or note) from a prior transferee and thereafter hold (it) with all remedies intact: said of an indorser.
  • To retire (a bill or note) by taking (it) up at maturity, with all remedies on it extinguished: said of an acceptor.
  • To draw back; take or lead back; cause to move backward or retreat.
  • To take away; withdraw: remove.
  • To lead apart from others; bring into retirement; remove as from a company or a frequented place into seclusion: generally with a reflexive pronoun.
  • To withdraw; separate; abstract.
  • Specifically, to remove from active service; place on the retired list, as of the army or navy.
  • To recover; redeem; regain by the payment of a sum of money; hence, specifically, to withdraw from circulation by taking up and paying: as, to retire the bonds of a railway company; to retire a bill.
  • To draw back; go back; return.
  • To draw back; fall back; retreat, as from battle or danger.
  • To withdraw; go away or apart; depart; especially, to betake one's self, as from a company or a frequented place, into privacy; go into retirement or seclusion; in the army or navy, to go voluntarily on the retired list.
  • To withdraw from business or active life.
  • Specifically, to go to bed.
  • To slope back; recede; retreat.
  • Synonyms and To depart, recede. See retreat.
  • noun The act of retiring; withdrawal.
  • noun Retreat, especially in war.
  • noun Retirement; withdrawal into privacy or seclusion; hence, a state of retirement.
  • noun A place of retirement or withdrawal.
  • noun Repair; resort.

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

  • transitive verb To withdraw; to take away; -- sometimes used reflexively.
  • transitive verb To withdraw from circulation, or from the market; to take up and pay
  • transitive verb To cause to retire; specifically, to designate as no longer qualified for active service; to place on the retired list.
  • intransitive verb To go back or return; to draw back or away; to keep aloof; to withdraw or retreat, as from observation; to go into privacy
  • intransitive verb To retreat from action or danger; to withdraw for safety or pleasure.
  • intransitive verb To withdraw from a public station, or from business.
  • intransitive verb To recede; to fall or bend back.
  • intransitive verb To go to bed.
  • noun obsolete The act of retiring, or the state of being retired; also, a place to which one retires.
  • noun (Mil.) A call sounded on a bugle, announcing to skirmishers that they are to retire, or fall back.

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

  • noun rare The act of retiring, or the state of being retired; also, a place to which one retires.
  • noun dated A call sounded on a bugle, announcing to skirmishers that they are to retire, or fall back.
  • verb transitive To withdraw; to take away; -- sometimes used reflexively.
  • verb transitive To withdraw from circulation, or from the market; to take up and pay; as, to retire bonds; to retire a note.
  • verb transitive To cause to retire; specifically, to designate as no longer qualified for active service; to place on the retired list; as, to retire a military or naval officer.

Etymologies

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

[French retirer, to retreat, from Old French, to take back : re-, re- + tirer, to draw; see tier.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle French retirer ("draw back"), from prefix re- ("back"), + verb tirer ("draw, pull"), from Old French tirer, tirier ("to draw out, arrange, adorn"), from tire, tiere ("row, rank, order, dress") of Germanic origin akin to Old English and Old Saxon tīr ("fame, glory, ornament"), Old English tīer ("rank, row"), Old High German ziari, zēri ("ornament"), German Zier ("ornament, adornment"), German zieren ("to adorn"). More at tier

Examples

Comments

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  • Contronymic in the sense: retreat vs. renew, as in put new tires on your car.

    January 26, 2007

  • Cricket jargon - a batsman retires when he interrupts his innings voluntarily. If he does so due to injury or illness he may resume his innings later. If he does so for any other reason he may not resume without the permission of the opposing captain.

    December 2, 2007