turn back the clock


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

turn back the clock

1. Literally, to set the clock to an earlier time. Can you turn back the clock? It's five minutes fast.
2. To revisit, recount, or recreate a time or era from the past. If I could turn back the clock, I would manage my finances better so I could retire at an earlier age. The purpose of this conference is to turn back the clock by analyzing early human remains to gain insight into their way of life.
See also: back, clock, turn

turn back the clock

 and turn the clock back
See also: back, clock, turn

turn back the clock

return to the past or to a previous way of doing things.
See also: back, clock, turn

turn the clock back, to

To return to an earlier way of life; to restore past conditions. This metaphor dates from the nineteenth century and generally represents a vain attempt to return to a past era. “You can’t turn back the hands of the clock,” wrote Erle Stanley Gardner (The Case of the Turning Tide, 1941).
See also: clock, turn
References in periodicals archive ?
Among the attractions are the Red Devils Free-fall Parachute Team, the Royal Signals White Helmets Motorcycle Display Team and for the first time, Gothic Renaissance, a team of historic re-enactors who will turn back the clock 200 years to the time of Napoleon and the Peninsular War.
Best are hard-rock hits Blackout and Bad Boys Running Wild, which blazed a trail for The Darkness, but more recent attempts to turn back the clock, such as Mysterious, pale by comparison.
Popular Paddy Folan, the Huddersfield super-featherweight who found the lure of the ring too tempting to retire, will turn back the clock on Sunday, March 6.
Not that he wants to turn back the clock. "Sometimes you have to spend some time on your own to find out who you are and what you really want," says Child, who recently ended a ten-year relationship.
CHAMPION horseman Oliver Skeete yesterday warned the BNP is trying to turn back the clock on racism as our Hope not Hate bus reached the Midlands.
MARK HUGHESwants Blackburn to turn back the clock on and off the pitch when they take on Greek side Larissa tonight.
HE didn't exactly turn back the clock, but Duncan Ferguson showed against Charlton that his presence alone is enough to influence a match.
A breakdancing workshop for youngsters in Morpeth Market Place at the weekend gave 44-year-old Mr Dunbar a chance to turn back the clock and he readily grabbed it donning his T-shirt and trainers to body-pop, moonwalk and backspin.
Merson cannot turn back the clock, though, and is having to reap the consequences of hyping his team up and raising the expectations of the fans.
PENSIONERS gathered to turn back the clock and remember the 1940s.
The Brazilian, who completed his move to hometown club Palmeiras, said: 'If I could turn back the clock then I would never have signed for Celtic.
He said: ``I have seen a few tapes from that World Cup since and I find it hard to watch them, I just cannot turn back the clock and be that sort of player again.''
MIDDLE-AGED people can turn back the clock and recapture their lost youth with just a few hours of exercise a week, say experts.
ALEX Ferguson is hoping to turn back the clock to some of Manchester United's most successful defensive years following the signing of French World Cup star Laurent Blanc.