retreat

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beat a (hasty) retreat

to withdraw from a place very quickly. We went out into the cold weather, but beat a retreat to the warmth of our fire. The dog beat a hasty retreat to its own yard.
See also: beat, retreat

retreat (from something) (to some place)

to withdraw from something to some place. The army retreated from the battlefield to the safety of the forest. They retreated to the other side of the river.

beat a (hasty) retreat

to quickly leave When the cold grows overwhelming, visitors can beat a retreat to Joe Mulligan's warm bar and restaurant.
Etymology: based on the military meaning of beat a retreat (to drum a signal to soldiers that they are to move back from a fight, usually one they have lost)
See also: beat, retreat

beat a retreat

to leave a place because it is dangerous or unpleasant When the cold grows overwhelming, visitors can beat a retreat to Joe Mulligan's warm saloon. When we saw the police arriving we beat a hasty retreat.
See also: beat, retreat

beat a retreat

Also, beat a hasty retreat. Reverse course or withdraw, usually quickly. For example, I really don't want to run into Jeff-let's beat a retreat. This term originally (1300s) referred to the military practice of sounding drums to call back troops. Today it is used only figuratively, as in the example above.
See also: beat, retreat

beat a retreat

To make a hasty withdrawal.
See also: beat, retreat