1. The act of detaining.
2. The state or a period of being detained, especially:
a. A period of temporary custody while awaiting trial.
b. A holding of a person in custody or confinement by authorities for political or military reasons.
c. A form of punishment by which a student is made to stay after regular school hours.
[Middle English detencioun, act of withholding, from Anglo-Norman, from Latin dētentiō, dētentiōn-, from dētentus, past participle of dētinēre, to detain; see DETAIN.]
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Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
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