Adjective "detain" definition and examples

(Detain may not be an adjective, but it can be used as an adjective, click here to find out.)



Definitions and examples


Keep (someone) from proceeding by holding them back or making claims on their attention.
  1. 'A machine detains you for only a moment and then a pleasant live operator will thank you for saying ‘I oppose’ (or ‘I approve of’) of the proposed War against Iraq.'
  2. 'As I say, I wasn't detained by the characters' opinions.'
  3. 'Many people will think that this question need not detain us for more than a moment: the answer is yes.'
  4. 'she was detained without trial for two years'
  5. 'If people are unlawfully detained, they have a right to be free?'
  6. 'The ten men were originally detained without trial for two years in Belmarsh prison.'
  7. 'More than five weeks later, on August 14, Mitchell was detained for questioning but was released later that day without charge.'
  8. 'Because of poverty, the suspects are detained for 143 days on average before a court appearance.'
  9. 'They were briefly detained by police, then released without charge.'
  10. 'He was detained and questioned by UK Police, who used their powers under the Anti-Terrorism laws to do so.'
  11. 'Singh says he was detained for three hours until his friends could bail him out.'
  12. 'No child could be detained for a lengthy period of time without an order from juvenile court.'
  13. 'Because he was not detained in custody after 10th April, he continued to offend.'
  14. 'Officers confiscated medical instruments and blood stained linen as evidence and detained both women for questioning.'
  15. 'Inspecting premises such as restaurants, pubs, and food factories, detaining and seizing suspect food and investigating possible food poisoning outbreaks are all part of the job.'
  16. 'The reference to detention (my emphasis) appear to show that the Customs had a right to detain goods at any rate if their true value had not been declared.'
  17. 'He came to England to try to obtain an award from the Board of Longitude but his instruments were detained by the Customs as he entered the country.'

More definitions

1. to keep from proceeding; keep waiting; delay.

2. to keep under restraint or in custody.

3. Obsolete. to keep back or withhold, as from a person.

More examples(as adjective)

"values can be detain."

"socials can be detain."

"quarrels can be detain."


Late Middle English (in the sense ‘be afflicted with sickness or infirmity’): from Old French detenir, from a variant of Latin detinere, from de- ‘away, aside’ + tenere ‘to hold’.