Synonyms for back away

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Antonyms for back away

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Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR BACK AWAY

He tried to back away from her, oblivious to the fact that by his hold on her he dragged her after him.

Lip-lip essayed to back away, but White Fang struck him hard, shoulder to shoulder.

Beauty Smith, his hands still behind him, began to back away.

He had a shrinking will; his instinct in an emergency was to back away from things.

"I'll do nothing of the sort," said Travail, starting to back away.

He pointed it and started to back away to the tree behind him.

Link Merwell was also agitated, and for the instant tried to back away.

He tried the right, and had to back away from a furniture van that had no business to be there.

Then, on hands and knees, they saw him back away from the crest.

They stumbled all over one another in trying to back away from her.

WORD ORIGIN

Old English bæc "back," from Proto-Germanic *bakam (cf. Old Saxon and Middle Dutch bak, Old Frisian bek), with no known connections outside Germanic.

The cognates mostly have been ousted in this sense in other modern Germanic languages by words akin to Modern English ridge (cf. Danish ryg, German Rücken). Many Indo-European languages show signs of once having distinguished the horizontal back of an animal (or a mountain range) from the upright back of a human. In other cases, a modern word for "back" may come from a word related to "spine" (Italian schiena, Russian spina) or "shoulder, shoulder blade" (Spanish espalda, Polish plecy).

To turn (one's) back on (someone or something) "ignore" is from early 14c. Behind (someone's) back "clandestinely" is from late 14c.

To know (something) like the back of one's hand, implying familiarity, is first attested 1893. The first attested use of the phrase is from a dismissive speech made to a character in Robert Louis Stevenson's "Catriona":

The story, a sequel to "Kidnapped," has a Scottish setting and context, and the back of my hand to you was noted in the late 19th century as a Scottish expression meaning "I will have nothing to do with you" [e.g. "Jamieson's Dictionary of the Scottish Language"]. In English generally, the back of (one's) hand has been used to imply contempt and rejection since at least 1300. Perhaps the connection of a menacing dismissal is what made Stevenson choose that particular anatomical reference.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR BACK AWAY

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.