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From throw +‎ back.


throwback (plural throwbacks)

  1. A reversion to an earlier stage of development.
    • 1986, Ronald Reagan, Presidential Radio Address - 17 May 1986:
      You see, the House of Representatives recently passed a military budget that is wholly inadequate, a throwback to the seventies, a budget that is a breach of faith with our Armed Forces and our allies and would send exactly the wrong signal to the Soviets and their satellites.
  2. An organism that has characteristics of a more primitive form.
  3. An atavism.
    • 1901, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles, Chapter 13:
      "But this is marvellous. It might be his portrait."

      "Yes, it is an interesting instance of a throwback, which appears to be both physical and spiritual. A study of family portraits is enough to convert a man to the doctrine of reincarnation. The fellow is a Baskerville—that is evident."

  4. A person similar to an ancestor, or something new similar to what already existed.