set back

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Related to set back: gloating, follow through

set (one) back

1. To cost someone a specific amount of money. Getting the car fixed is going to set me back nearly a grand. It's estimated the failed product set the company back roughly $2 million.
2. To delay someone for a specific amount of time. That computer virus wiped out our data and set us back nearly a month in our work. He was supposed to arrive by 9, but the traffic jam set him back about an hour.
See also: back, set

set (something) back

To delay or hinder something. A series of conflicts within the administration has set healthcare reform back yet again.
See also: back, set

set someone back (some amount of money)

to cost someone (an amount of money). This coat set me back about $250. That fancy dinner at the restaurant last night really set us back.
See also: back, set

set something back

 and put something back
to set something, like a timepiece, to a lower number. (Put is less common.) It's that time of year when you must set your clocks and watches back! Set back your clock tonight. I have to put all the clocks back.
See also: back, set

set back

1. Slow down the progress of, hinder, as in The project was set back by the frequent absences of staff members. [First half of 1500s]
2. Cost, as in That car set me back twenty thousand dollars. [Colloquial; c. 1900]
3. Change to a lower level or earlier time, as in We set back the thermostat whenever we go on vacation, or On October 10 we have to set back the clocks. [First half of 1600s] Set back the clock is also used figuratively to mean "return to an earlier era," as in He wished he could set back the clock to those carefree high-school days. Also see set forward.
See also: back, set

set back

1. To construct something so that it is a certain distance away from the edge of some boundary. Used in the passive: All houses must be set back 100 feet from the lake. The second tier of the building is set back 10 feet.
2. To slow down the progress of something; hinder something: Bad weather set the project back two weeks. The recent attacks have set back the peace process.
3. To cost someone some amount of money: That coat set me back $1,000.
4. To adjust some instrument or device to an earlier reading: Last fall, I forgot to set back my clock. The dealership set the odometer back and tried to sell the car as new.
See also: back, set
References in periodicals archive ?
1) Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Wiesenthal Center, fears the Mel Gibson film could set back Christian-Jewish relations.
Primarily a loft building, 150 Bay offers six 1 bedroom apartments, each with set back terraces.
But consider the following: The children have an hour more of daylight in late October, when the clock is set back to standard time.
A low (10m) building on Kochstra[ss]e restores the street to decency; another low block to the west of the site is set back from the street with a west-facing terrace for the bistro.
The company apologizes to all shareholders and interested parties for the time expanded in this bond financing and hopes that the substantially better terms obtained from the new financing source will offset, to an appreciable degree, the set back suffered in the delay to move the company forward.
The building is set back eight foot from the sidewalk along the Avenue M side, allowing another side yard area for both privacy and plantings.
But bungling by the city Department of Water and Power in its pet undertaking - to do something with recycled toilet and sewer water - may set back construction of the 14-mile route of the bus rapidway.
The Chamber of Economy is set back from Dimitz Street by a new square some 30m deep, a civic space which has been won by pushing the building back to the northern edge of the site as a slab.
Congressman Visclosky's original plan calls for free and open access of 75% of the lake shore with a 200-foot set back from the Illinois state line to the east end of Portage.
44 West 22nd is 23 feet wide and 98 feet deep, built full on the ground and second floor, set back to 60 feet on floors three to five.
The proposed ordinance, aimed at maintaining the charm of residential neighborhoods, would have required that multifamily complexes next to single-family homes be limited to two stories and be set back 15 feet from the property line to create a softer transition.
Columns are set back from the perimeter and the double skin is stiffened by extruded aluminium wind-bracing posts.
She stated, "We need to initiate a tracking system immediately and although we have been set back with the bird flu crisis, we are now ready to move forward on this project.
In two weeks, the council will consider adopting changes to zoning standards that would require a multifamily development adjacent to a house to be limited to two stories and be set back 15 feet from the property line to create a softer transition between the two buildings.
The Economist itself occupies a tall office tower set back on the corner of Bury Street and Ryder Street, with a smaller pavilion-like structure flanking Boodles Club on St James's Street.