Definitions

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

  • n. An unanticipated or sudden check in progress; a change from better to worse.
  • n. A steplike recession in a wall.
  • n. Any of a series of such recessions in the rise of a tall building.
  • n. An automatically timed setting of a thermostat to a lower temperature, as in the home at night.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An obstacle, delay, or disadvantage.
  • n. The required distance between a structure and a road.
  • n. A step-like recession in a wall.
  • n. A backset; a countercurrent; an eddy.
  • n. A backset; a check; a repulse; a relapse.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Offset, n., 4.
  • n. A backset; a countercurrent; an eddy.
  • n. A reversal of progress in an endeavor; a reverse; a backset; a check; a repulse; a relapse.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Same as backset, 1.
  • n. Same as backset, 2.
  • n. A pool or overflow setting back over the land, as from a freshet.
  • n. In architecture, a flat plain set-off in a wall.
  • n. Any game in which a failure to score is counted by setting back the player instead of allowing his adversary to add the points to his score: usually restricted to games such as all-fours, in which there is bidding for the trump.

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

  • v. hold back to a later time
  • v. cost a certain amount
  • v. slow down the progress of; hinder
  • n. structure where a wall or building narrows abruptly
  • n. an unfortunate happening that hinders or impedes; something that is thwarting or frustrating

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • Sir Alex Ferguson believes the Champions League carrot will inspire a United revival after the title setback against Chelsea.

    Football.co.uk news feed

  • Another setback is the slow pace of the disclosure of government documentation in civil proceedings brought by six former Guant├ínamo inmates who are suing the government for its alleged role in their rendition and torture.

    MPs set out list of torture inquiry demands in letter to judge

  • At the time it occurs, a setback is a potential failure.

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch » 2009 » September

  • While Bohl describes the shoulder surgery as a "short term setback" in the lead up to next year's London Olympics, he admits Rice needs to work hard before the selection trials in March.

    NEWS.com.au | Top Stories

  • Alderson steered clear of using the word "setback" to describe Santana's situation but not by much.

    NYT > Home Page

  • Juventus suffered a serious Serie A title setback when rock-bottom visitors Catania clinched a 2-1 win, handing the Turin giants a third straight defeat.

    Top Headlines

  • Juventus suffered a serious Serie A title setback on Sunday when rock-bottom visitors Catania clinched a 2-1 win, handing the Turin giants a third straight defeat.

    Taipei Times

  • ROME (AFP) - Juventus suffered a serious Serie A title setback on Sunday when rock-bottom visitors Catania clinched a 2-1 win, handing the Turin giants a third straight defeat.

    Soccerway.com

  • The current setback is finding a director since Christopher Nolan dropped out.

    Superhero Nation: how to write superhero novels and comic books » Open Writing Forum

  • "While the moratorium represents a hurdle to the nuclear-energy industry, passage of the referendum would be a much more serious obstacle, all but guaranteeing a long-term setback to Italy's ambitious plan to bring nuclear reactors online by 2020," analysts at research group Eurasia Group said.

    Italy Votes on Scrapping Nuclear Energy

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