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back down

This page is about the phrasal verb back down.

Meaning: to decide not to do something because of opposition, or because of pressure from authorities

For example:

  • back down Thousands of people protested against the government's decision to allow logging in the forest, so the government had to back down.

  • back down on sth The workers didn't back down on their demands for higher wages even though the company threatened to sack them.

Quick Quiz:

The anti-war protesters wanted the government to back down on its decision to

a. start a war in Iraq

b. end the war in Iraq

c. prevent future wars

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Contributor: Matt Errey