- 1 at or toward the back of someone or something, and often hidden by it or them Who's the girl standing behind Jan? Stay close behind me. a small street behind the station She glanced behind her. Don't forget to lock the door behind you (= when you leave). The sun disappeared behind the clouds. compare in front of Which Word?the back / the rear / behind The back and the rear have a similar meaning, but the rear is used more in formal or official language:What's that in the back of the fridge? The exits are located at the rear of the aircraft.It is usual to talk about the back door of a house, but the rear exit of an aircraft or a public building. If something is behind something else, it is near to the back of it but not part of it. Compare:Our room was at the back of the hotelandThere’s a pretty little pond just behind our hotel.
- 2making less progress than someone or something He's behind the rest of the class in reading. We're behind schedule (= late).
- 3giving support to, or approval of, someone or something She knew that, whatever she decided, her family was right behind her.
- 4responsible for starting or developing something What's behind that happy smile (= what is causing it)? He was the man behind the plan to build a new hospital.
- 5 used to say that something is in someone's past The accident is behind you now, so try to forget it. She has ten years of useful experience behind her.
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