Definition of turn back phrasal verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary

  

turn back

 phrasal verb
phrasal verb
 
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Phrasal Verbs

turn back

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turn somebody/somethingback

 
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 to return the way you have come; to make someone or something do this The weather became so bad that they had to turn back. (figurative) We said we would do it—there can be no turning back. Our car was turned back at the border. Thesaurusreturncome back go back get back turn backThese words all mean to come or go back from one place to another.return to come or go back from one place to another:I waited a long time for him to return. Return is slightly more formal than the other words in this group, and is used more often in writing or formal speech.come back to return Come back is usually used from the point of view of the person or place that someone returns to:Come back and visit again soon!go back to return to the place you recently or originally came from or that you have been to before Go back is usually used from the point of view of the person who is returning:Do you ever want to go back to China?get back to arrive back somewhere, especially at your home or the place where you are staying:What time did you get back last night?turn back to return the way that you came, especially because something stops you from continuing:The weather got so bad that we had to turn back.Patterns to return/come back/go back/get back to/from/with something to return/come back/go back/get back/turn back again to return/come back/go back/get back home/to work to return/come back/get back safely
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: turn back