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[ri-tahyuh r-ing] /rɪˈtaɪər ɪŋ/
that retires.
withdrawing from contact with others; reserved; shy.
Origin of retiring
1540-50; retire + -ing2
Related forms
retiringly, adverb
retiringness, noun
nonretiring, adjective
unretiring, adjective
2. diffident, bashful, timid.


[ri-tahyuh r] /rɪˈtaɪər/
verb (used without object), retired, retiring.
to withdraw, or go away or apart, to a place of privacy, shelter, or seclusion:
He retired to his study.
to go to bed:
He retired at midnight.
to withdraw from office, business, or active life, usually because of age:
to retire at the age of sixty.
to fall back or retreat in an orderly fashion and according to plan, as from battle, an untenable position, danger, etc.
to withdraw or remove oneself:
After announcing the guests, the butler retired.
verb (used with object), retired, retiring.
to withdraw from circulation by taking up and paying, as bonds, bills, etc.; redeem.
to withdraw or lead back (troops, ships, etc.), as from battle or danger; retreat.
to remove from active service or the usual field of activity, as an army officer or business executive.
to withdraw (a machine, ship, etc.) permanently from its normal service, usually for scrapping; take out of use.
Sports. to put out (a batter, side, etc.).
noun, Literary.
a place of withdrawal; retreat:
a cool retire from summer's heat.
retirement or withdrawal, as from worldly matters or the company of others.
1525-35; < Middle French retirer to withdraw, equivalent to re- re- + tirer to draw
Related forms
retirer, noun
5. leave, withdraw. See depart. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for retiring
  • He needed one last great adventure, and the revenue from the bestselling book that was sure to follow, before retiring.
  • Next you re going to complain that curing cancer is a conspiracy to prevent people from retiring early.
  • Then he began to talk of retiring altogether from public life.
  • Is slightly shy and retiring but not to any abnormal extent.
  • As he surely would have been, if he could: difficult to imagine him ever retiring except through incapacity.
  • But he stopped short of retiring, saying he would undergo more tests in another three months.
  • If there are too many red blood cells retiring for the liver to handle, yellow pigment builds up in the body.
  • Now that the boomers themselves are retiring, the cost is becoming clear.
  • Living longer, and retiring early, might not be a problem if the supply of workers were increasing.
  • Once upon a time the rich countries had no problems paying fat benefits to the retiring population.
British Dictionary definitions for retiring


shunning contact with others; shy; reserved
Derived Forms
retiringly, adverb


verb (mainly intransitive)
(also transitive) to give up or to cause (a person) to give up his work, a post, etc, esp on reaching pensionable age (in Britain and Australia usually 65 for men, 60 for women)
to go away, as into seclusion, for recuperation, etc
to go to bed
to recede or disappear: the sun retired behind the clouds
to withdraw from a sporting contest, esp because of injury
(also transitive) to pull back (troops, etc) from battle or an exposed position or (of troops, etc) to fall back
  1. to remove (bills, bonds, shares, etc) from circulation by taking them up and paying for them
  2. to remove (money) from circulation
Derived Forms
retirer, noun
Word Origin
C16: from French retirer, from Old French re- + tirer to pull, draw
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for retiring

1580s, "departing, retreating," present participle adjective from retire (v.). Also "fond of retiring, disposed to seclusion," hence "unobtrusive, modest, subdued" (1766).



1530s, of armies, "to retreat," from Middle French retirer "to withdraw (something)," from re- "back" (see re-) + Old French tirer "to draw" (see tirade). Related: Retired; retiring.

Meaning "to withdraw" to some place, especially for the sake of privacy, is recorded from 1530s; sense of "leave an occupation" first attested 1640s (implied in retirement). Meaning "to leave company and go to bed" is from 1660s. Transitive sense is from 1540s, originally "withdraw, lead back" (troops, etc.); meaning "to remove from active service" is from 1680s. Baseball sense of "to put out" is recorded from 1874.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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