Meaning of “retrieve” in the English Dictionary

"retrieve" in British English

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retrieveverb [ T ]

uk /rɪˈtriːv/ us /rɪˈtriːv/

C2 to find and bring back something:

We taught our dog to retrieve a ball.
Computers are used to store and retrieve information efficiently.

More examples

  • This software helps firms archive and retrieve emails.
  • They've managed to retrieve most of the data.
  • Did they manage to retrieve anything from the fire?
  • She bent over to retrieve her bag from where it had fallen under the seat.
  • Goodwill that is lost is extremely difficult to retrieve.
noun [ U ] uk /rɪˈtriː.vəl/ us /rɪˈtriː.vəl/

the storage and retrieval of information

(Definition of “retrieve” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"retrieve" in American English

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retrieveverb [ T ]

us /rɪˈtriv/

to find and bring back something:

Important historic documents were retrieved from a dumpster last week.
noun [ U ] us /rɪˈtri·vəl/

information storage and retrieval

(Definition of “retrieve” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"retrieve" in Business English

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retrieveverb [ T ]

uk /rɪˈtriːv/ us

IT to get stored information from a computer:

retrieve data/information I finally managed to retrieve the deleted data.
retrieve a record/image/file, etc. The search is designed to retrieve all the records WorldCat has for a particular book.
retrieve sth from sth The product helps retrieve accidentally deleted image files from virtually any kind of removable media for digital cameras.

to get something back that has been lost, taken, or left somewhere:

The company has taken legal action to retrieve the stolen cash.
retrieve sth from sb/sth He retrieved the documents from his colleague's desk.

(Definition of “retrieve” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)