Definition of detract in English:

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Pronunciation: /dəˈtrakt/


1 [no object] (detract from) Reduce or take away the worth or value of: these quibbles in no way detract from her achievement
More example sentences
  • As a result, the case is being made that money spent to minimise risk does not detract from shareholder value, but protects it.
  • Choose a design that fits in with the style and scale of your home, otherwise you could detract from its value and end up living in a fortress.
  • There are not many places where you can get into conversation about how to detract from the value of the local housing.
belittle, take away from, diminish, reduce, lessen, minimize, play down, trivialize, decry, depreciate, devalue, deprecate
1.1 [with object] Deny or take away (a quality or achievement) so as to make its subject seem less impressive: it detracts not one iota from the credit due to them
More example sentences
  • The fact Colin never won Olympic gold does not detract one bit from his achievements.
  • We have had to display a lot more than our own hand-made goods, which does detract a bit from our crafting origins, but we are determined to make a go of it.
  • Far from having the character of final coda, the added six months would, if he got them, be anticlimactic, detracting a bit from the beauty of his life as a whole.
2 [with object] (detract someone/something from) Divert or distract (someone or something) away from: the complaint was timed to detract attention from the ethics issue
More example sentences
  • The allegations would have detracted me from my election campaign.
  • Sets and costumes are simple yet adequate but this should not detract you from acquiring this competitively priced package that offers an outstanding performance.
  • But these should not detract us from enjoying a book that, even if at times quite demanding, will enhance our understanding of numbers and make us appreciate their history.



Pronunciation: /dəˈtrakSH(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • When I buy Frank magazine and pass it around, I am doing evil for I am sharing in the sin of detraction and calumny.
  • These small detractions don't stop Raimi's film from being a superlative movie, a rare sequel that betters its predecessor, a rare blockbuster that has an emotional heart.
  • Although the executive committee said that all these entries had good points, they felt that each had enough detractions to deny them the award.


Pronunciation: /dəˈtraktiv/
Example sentences
  • Obloquy means roughly ‘travesty,’ ‘abusively detractive language,’ or ‘a gross distortion and cheapening of a widely-held doctrine or faith.’
  • This Miniature Third Reich Battle Flag is made of lithographed metal and is in un-issued condition with some minor storage wear on each example that is not detractive.
  • I'm not 100% sure that the graphics were needed, but it certainly isn't detractive.


Late Middle English: from Latin detract- 'drawn away', from the verb detrahere, from de- 'away from' + trahere 'draw'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: de·tract

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