back down


1. withdraw from a particular idea or course of action






Check Icon How to Memorize

back down from a fight/argument

Check Icon Analysis

When you 'back down' from something, you decide not to continue to challenge the position or opinions of someone else or uphold or fight for your own position or opinion. This usually occurs as a result of pressure from others. You might 'back down from a fight' or argument, for example. A more advanced word meaning 'to back down' is 'concede'; as in "The government conceded to the protesters and changed the unpopular law". You can use 'back down' in social or professional contexts, in numerous situations; but 'concede' is more formal.

Check Icon Social Examples (Basic)

  1. Sarah doesn't let anyone push her around. She'll never back down from a fight.
  2. It's too late to back down now. You'll have to do what you promised.

Check Icon Professional Examples (Basic)

  1. The negotiations have hit an impasse as neither side will even consider backing down from their demands.
  2. The boss intended to scrap bonuses as a cost-cutting measure, but when the staff threatened to go on strike, he backed down.

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