Definition of retractable in US English:



  • 1Able to be drawn back or back in.

    ‘a stadium with a retractable roof’
    ‘the tigers have retractable claws’
    • ‘This was to become the first British-produced plane with a retractable undercarriage.’
    • ‘All seats have full three-point retractable safety belts.’
    • ‘Retractable awnings are ideal for covering a patio.’
    • ‘Mounted on the loading dock was a retractable conveyor belt which could be moved forward into the van.’
    • ‘Retractable tape measures were permanently secured to a winding mechanism inside the casing.’
    • ‘A student unfurls a small furry pet attached to a retractable string on her parka.’
    • ‘Once it's out of the package, you can see both retractable cables.’
    • ‘A price above €60,000 should entitle the owner to an automatically retractable radio aerial.’
    • ‘From the kitchen, access is gained to the attic space by means of a retractable ladder.’
    • ‘Three sets of retractable doors line the wall opposite the cabinets.’
  • 2(of a statement or accusation) able to be withdrawn.

    ‘the agreement was not retractable’
    • ‘It not only deems it impolite to insult directly, but also can include an obvious, but easily retractable accusation.’
    • ‘Besides proof by retractable confession, evidence can be given by two male adults who saw the accused drinking and smelled alcohol on his breath.’
    • ‘It may soften his retractable opinion of the duke.’
    • ‘Another retractable statement derived from that same interview would be, "I can't sing."’
    • ‘A simple forgivable and retractable remark cannot destroy him, especially if he'd apologize.’
    • ‘The retractable assertion can be removed after satisfactory checking.’
    • ‘Relationships between women and men should be voluntary and based on love, and on a simple and retractable agreement to live together.’
    • ‘The offer of severance was merely a retractable promise to pay severance with an explanation of how it would be computed.’
    • ‘Oh, it was one of those retractable vows.’
    • ‘His retractable pledges are offered before an election, ready to be snatched back afterwards.’