beat a retreat

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

See beat (to signal beating a drum).

Verb[edit]

beat a retreat (third-person singular simple present beats a retreat, present participle beating a retreat, simple past beat a retreat, past participle beaten a retreat)

  1. (informal) To leave hastily in the face of opposition.

Usage notes[edit]

retreat can be qualified by an adjective: to beat a hasty retreat.

Related terms[edit]

References[edit]