1. [ verb ] formally reject or disavow a formerly held belief, usually under pressure
Synonyms: forswear recant resile abjure

"He retracted his earlier statements about his religion" "She abjured her beliefs"

Related terms: renounce retraction
2. [ verb ] (surgery) use a surgical instrument to hold open (the edges of a wound or an organ)
Synonyms: pull_back draw_back
Related terms: pull retractor
3. [ verb ] pull away from a source of disgust or fear
Synonyms: shrink_back
Related terms: flinch
4. [ verb ] pull inward or towards a center
Synonyms: draw_in

"The pilot drew in the landing gear" "The cat retracted his claws"

Related terms: attract attract invaginate attract retraction
Similar spelling:   retractor