Definition of retrogress in English:



  • Go back to an earlier state, typically a worse one.

    ‘she retrogressed to the starting point of her rehabilitation’
    • ‘Melanie let out a few barks, but slowly they retrogressed to a bitter growl.’
    • ‘His point was not that we should in fact retrogress, but that the future and the present can be imagined differently.’
    • ‘This proves that her determination to fight AIDS and to seek justice is retrogressing rapidly.’
    • ‘Europe had retrogressed almost to a primitive way of life, wherein learning was preserved largely in the monasteries.’
    • ‘It's been struggling uphill some of time, and retrogressing much of the time, as well.’
    • ‘A lot of what is on our airwaves is not the kind of thing we want to institutionalise, and to not have a code, we think we have retrogressed.’
    • ‘Society in the past 50 years has known an extremely one-sided development, with science and technology making great strides while social life and culture have stagnated and retrogressed.’
    • ‘I do hope that we were able to retrogress you back into the man our daughter loved, not the tepid person you currently are.’


Early 19th century: from retro- ‘back’, on the pattern of the verb progress.