Back·ward, n. The state behind or past. [Obs.]
In the dark backward and abysm of time. --Shak.
Back·ward, v. t. To keep back; to hinder. [Obs.]
Back·ward Back·wards adv.
1. With the back in advance or foremost; as, to ride backward.
2. Toward the back; toward the rear; as, to throw the arms backward.
3. On the back, or with the back downward.
Thou wilt fall backward. --Shak.
4. Toward, or in, past time or events; ago.
Some reigns backward. --Locke.
5. By way of reflection; reflexively.
6. From a better to a worse state, as from honor to shame, from religion to sin.
The work went backward. --Dryden.
7. In a contrary or reverse manner, way, or direction; contrarily; as, to read backwards.
We might have . . . beat them backward home. --Shak.
1. Directed to the back or rear; as, backward glances.
2. Unwilling; averse; reluctant; hesitating; loath.
For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves. --Pope.
3. Not well advanced in learning; not quick of apprehension; dull; inapt; as, a backward child. “The backward learner.”
4. Late or behindhand; as, a backward season.
5. Not advanced in civilization; undeveloped; as, the country or region is in a backward state.
6. Already past or gone; bygone. [R.]
And flies unconscious o'er each backward year. --Byron.
adj 1: directed or facing toward the back or rear; "a backward
view" [ant: forward]
2: (used of temperament or behavior) marked by a retiring
nature; "a backward lover" [ant: forward]
3: retarded in intellectual development [syn: feebleminded]
adv 1: at or to or toward the back or rear; "he moved back";
"tripped when he stepped backward"; "she looked
rearward out the window of the car" [syn: back, backwards,
rearward, rearwards] [ant: forward]
2: in a manner or order or direction the reverse of normal;
"it's easy to get the `i' and the `e' backward in words
like `seize' and `siege'"; "the child put her jersey on
backward" [syn: backwards]
3: in or to or toward a past time; "set the clocks back an
hour"; "never look back"; "lovers of the past looking
fondly backward" [syn: back] [ant: ahead, ahead]