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Synonyms of back in English:


  • 1 they think she's broken her back
    spine, backbone, spinal column, vertebral column
    technical dorsum, rachis
  • 2 the back of the house
    rear, rear side, other side;
    Nautical  stern
    [Antonyms] front
  • 3 the back of the queue
    end, tail end, rear end, tail, far end;
    North American  tag end
    [Antonyms] front, head
  • 4 the back of a postcard
    reverse, reverse side, other side, underside;
    informal flip side
    [Antonyms] front, face
  • Phrases

    behind someone's back
    secretly, without someone's knowledge, on the sly, deceitfully, slyly, sneakily, covertly, surreptitiously, furtively
    get/put someone's back up
    these kinds of questions tend to engage the other party, whereas assertions can put their backs up
    [Antonyms] please, gratify
    annoy, irritate, vex, make angry, make cross, anger, exasperate, irk, gall, pique, put out, displease, antagonize, get on someone's nerves, rub up the wrong way, ruffle, ruffle someone's feathers, make someone's hackles rise, raise someone's hackles;
    enrage, infuriate, madden, make someone's blood boil, drive to distraction, goad, provoke
    informal aggravate, peeve, hassle, miff, rile, nettle, needle, get, get to, bug, hack off, get under someone's skin, get in someone's hair, get up someone's nose, put someone's nose out of joint, get someone's goat, give someone the hump, rattle someone's cage, drive mad/crazy, drive round the bend/twist, drive up the wall, make someone see red
    British informal wind up, nark, get across, get on someone's wick
    North American informal tee off, tick off, burn up, rankle, ride, gravel
    vulgar slang piss off
    British vulgar slang get on someone's tits
    informal, dated give someone the pip, get someone's dander up
    rare exacerbate, hump, rasp
    the back of beyond
    the middle of nowhere, the backwoods, the wilds, the hinterland, a backwater;
    Australian/New Zealand  the back country, the backblocks, the booay;
    South African  the backveld, the platteland
    North American informal the boondocks, the boonies, the tall timbers
    Australian/New Zealand informal Woop Woop, beyond the black stump
    turn one's back on
    in 1973, she turned her back on her career
    abandon, give up, have done with, throw up;
    informal quit, pack in, jack in


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  • 1 she walked away without looking back he pushed his chair back
    backwards, behind one, to one's rear, rearwards;
    away, off
    [Antonyms] forward
  • 2 keep back from the roadside
    away, at a distance
  • 3 her husband left her a few months back
    ago, earlier, previously, before, in the past
  • verb

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  • 1 the project was backed by the English Tourist Board
    sponsor, finance, put up the money for, fund, subsidize, underwrite, promote, lend one's name to, be a patron of, act as guarantor of, support
    informal foot the bill for, pick up the tab for
    North American informal bankroll, stake
  • 2 over 97 per cent backed the changes
    support, endorse, sanction, approve of, give one's blessing to, smile on, favour, advocate, promote, uphold, champion;
    vote for, ally oneself with, stand behind, side with, be on the side of, defend, take up the cudgels for;
    [Antonyms] oppose
  • 3 he backed the horse at 33–1
    bet on, place a bet on, gamble on, stake money on
  • 4 he backed slowly out of the garage
    reverse, move/drive backwards;
    backtrack, retrace one's steps
    [Antonyms] move forwards, advance
  • Phrases

    back away
    he took a step towards her and she hurriedly backed away
    [Antonyms] move forward
    draw back, step back, move away, back off, retreat, withdraw, pull back, give ground;
    shrink back, blench, cower, quail, quake
    back down
    the government backed down under pressure from the House of Lords
    give in, concede defeat, surrender, yield, submit, climb down, concede, reconsider;
    backtrack, back-pedal
    back out
    Coleman backed out of the deal
    renege on, go back on, withdraw from, pull out of, retreat from, fail to honour, abandon, default on, repudiate;
    informal get cold feet about, chicken out of
    back something up
    his statement was backed up by evidence from Mr Eric Bartlett
    [Antonyms] contradict, undermine
    substantiate, corroborate, confirm, support, bear out, endorse, bolster, reinforce, lend weight to;
    back someone up
    her husband's bound to back her up
    support, stand by, give one's support to, side with, be on someone's side, take someone's side, take someone's part;
    vouch for;
    help, assist, aid


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  • 1 the back garden
    [Antonyms] front
  • 2 the back row
    end, hind, hindmost, rearmost
    [Antonyms] front
  • 3 the bird's back feathers
    [Antonyms] front
  • 4 back copies of the journal
    past, old, previous, earlier, former, out of date
    [Antonyms] future
  • Word links

    dorsal, lumbar relating to the back
    supine lying on one's back
    posterior further back
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