retrieve

Definitions

General English

  • verb to bring back something which has been stored in a computer

Commerce

  • verb to get back (information) which is stored in a computer

Computing

Electronics

Publishing

  • verb to get something back from where it has been stored

Sports

  • verb to return a difficult shot

Origin & History of “retrieve”

To retrieve something is etymologically to ‘re-find’ it. The word comes from retreuv-, the stem of Old French retrover. this was a compound verb formed from the prefix re- ‘again’ and trover ‘find’ (ancestor of modern French trouver and source of English troubadour and trove, as in treasure trove). Its original application in English was to dogs re-finding game that had been temporarily lost (hence the term retriever (15th c.)).
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