Definition of retrospectively in US English:



  • 1With consideration of past events or situations.

    ‘medical records were retrospectively reviewed on 120 patients’
    • ‘He seemed to her, at least retrospectively, to have been the first man she loved enough to have married.’
    • ‘The film pieces together Caravaggio's life retrospectively, from the vantage point of the dying artist.’
    • ‘Films that retrospectively examine growing up in the 1980s are a recent phenomenon.’
    • ‘Thinking retrospectively about any exhibition is always a complicated assignment.’
    • ‘I get them taped when I'm at university, and then spend my holidays watching TV retrospectively.’
    • ‘The early notebooks retrospectively make ample reference to the rooms that Valéry occupied during this decade.’
    • ‘His approach reflects a nostalgia for the gloriously learned mind and limber memory of a retrospectively constructed Renaissance reader.’
    • ‘In our model, he is a myth invented retrospectively.’
    • ‘We later learn it is the voice of Joshua, now a middle-aged man, speaking retrospectively.’
    • ‘Dated to the 1470s, it no longer seems like the work of an imitator, retrospectively evoking an earlier moment in the master's career.’
    1. 1.1 With effect from a date in the past.
      ‘the rebates apply retrospectively from 1 April’
      • ‘Does this bill affect rights or impose obligations, retrospectively?’
      • ‘According to the legislation, a tax can be imposed retrospectively.’
      • ‘In the last 40 years, Congress has extended the term of copyright retrospectively 11 times.’
      • ‘The act applies retrospectively to contracts entered into before the act was passed.’
      • ‘The act did not reverse the decision itself, nor did it apply retrospectively, but carefully specified the way in which it applied to existing claims.’
      • ‘Some laws are still passed retrospectively.’
      • ‘The principle of not legislating retrospectively is supported by the interpretative principle (1999) that enactments do not have retrospective effect.’
      • ‘Only substantive civil laws can be operated retrospectively, if the statute specifically prescribes it or there exists large interest of the public as a whole.’
      • ‘It prohibits the legislature to make retrospective criminal laws—however, it does not prohibit a civil liability retrospectively.’
      • ‘A procedural statute should not generally speaking be applied retrospectively where the result would be to create new disabilities or obligations.’