Definition of go back phrasal verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


go back

 phrasal verb
phrasal verb
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Phrasal Verbs
if two people go back a period of time (usually a long time), they have known each other for that time Dave and I go back twenty years.
to return to a place She doesn't want to go back to her husband (= to live with him again). This toaster will have to go back (= be taken back to the shop/store where it was bought)—it's faulty. Of course we want to go back some day—it's our country, our real home. Synonymsreturncome 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 somebody 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
  1. 1  to consider something that happened or was said at an earlier time Can I go back to what you said at the beginning of the meeting? Once you have made this decision, there will be no going back (= you will not be able to change your mind).
  2. 2  to have existed since a particular time or for a particular period Their family goes back to the time of the Pilgrim Fathers.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: go back