Retain definition

rĭ-tān
To keep in possession or use.
verb
4
1
Retain is defined as to keep, hold on to or keep in place.

An example of retain is to keep a prized possession from childhood.

An example of retain is for mouth-gear to keep the teeth in place.

verb
3
0
To keep in mind; remember.

Retains the songs she learned in childhood.

verb
4
2
(educ.) To require (a student who has failed) to repeat a grade in school.
verb
3
1
verb
2
0
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To hold or keep in possession.
verb
2
1
To require (a student) to repeat a class or grade because of insufficient educational progress to advance.
verb
1
0
To keep in a particular place or condition.

A library that retains the author's papers; plants that retain a lot of water.

verb
1
0
To keep in one's service or pay.

Retain employees on a workforce.

verb
1
0
To hire (an attorney, for example) by the payment of a fee.
verb
1
0
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To keep in one's pay or service.
verb
1
0
To keep possession of; continue to have.

The family sold the house but retained the land.

verb
1
1
To keep in a fixed state or condition.
verb
1
1
To continue to have or hold in.

To retain heat.

verb
1
1
To continue to practice, use, etc.
verb
1
1
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To keep in mind.
verb
1
1
To hire, or arrange in advance for the services of, by paying a retainer.
verb
1
1
To employ by paying a retainer.
verb
1
1
To continue to have as a feature or aspect.

Retains his good humor after all the setbacks.

verb
0
0
To hire someone for (his or her services).
verb
0
0
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Origin of retain

  • Middle English retainen from Old French retenir from Latin retinēre re- re- tenēre to hold ten- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From French retenir, from Vulgar Latin *retinō, retinÄ«re, from Latin retinō, retinere, from Latin re- + teneō, tenere (“to hold")

    From Wiktionary