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Re*trac"tion (r&euptack_;*tr&ā;k"shŭn), n. [Cf. F. rétraction, L. retractio a drawing back, hesitation.] 1. The act of retracting, or drawing back; the state of being retracted; as, the retraction of a cat's claws.
2. The act of withdrawing something advanced, stated, claimed, or done; declaration of change of opinion; recantation.
Other men's insatiable desire of revenge hath wholly beguiled both church and state of the benefit of all my either retractions or concessions. Eikon Basilike.
3. (Physiol.) (a) The act of retracting or shortening; as, the retraction of a severed muscle; the retraction of a sinew. (b) The state or condition of a part when drawn back, or towards the center of the body.