What does detain mean?

Definitions for detain

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word detain.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. confine, detainverb

    deprive of freedom; take into confinement

  2. stay, detain, delayverb

    stop or halt

    "Please stay the bloodshed!"

  3. delay, detain, hold upverb

    cause to be slowed down or delayed

    "Traffic was delayed by the bad weather"; "she delayed the work that she didn't want to perform"


  1. detainverb

    Keep (someone) from proceeding by holding them back or making claims on their attention.

  2. detainverb

    To put under custody.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Detainverb

    to keep back or from; to withhold

  2. Detainverb

    to restrain from proceeding; to stay or stop; to delay; as, we were detained by an accident

  3. Detainverb

    to hold or keep in custody

  4. Detainnoun


Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Detain

    de-tān′, v.t. to hold from or back: to stop: to keep: to keep in custody.—ns. Detain′er, one who detains: (law) the holding of what belongs to another: a warrant to a sheriff to keep in custody a person already in confinement: Detain′ment (same as Detention). [O. Fr. detenir—L. detinērede, from, and tenēre, to hold.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce detain?

How to say detain in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of detain in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of detain in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of detain in a Sentence

  1. Jerry Brown:

    This will not be a mission to build a new wall. It will not be a mission to round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life, and National Guard will not be enforcing federal immigration laws.

  2. Andrew Selee:

    The Mexican governments decision to detain as many migrants as possible, after President Trump put pressure on them to do so, has made it clear just how many third-country nationals from outside Central America are actually in the country.

  3. Luis Cresencio Sandoval:

    Given thatmigration is not a crime but rather an administrative violation, we simply detain them and turn them over to the [Mexican immigration] authorities.

  4. Walter Landor:

    My thoughts are my company I can bring them together, select them, detain them, dismiss them.

  5. Peter Ustinov:

    People who reach the top of the tree are only those who haven't got the qualifications to detain them at the bottom.

Images & Illustrations of detain

  1. detaindetaindetaindetaindetain

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Translations for detain

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    a shortage of rainfall
    • A. slip
    • B. drought
    • C. integrity
    • D. relocation

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