• (British, America) IPA: /ɹɛt/

ret (rets, present participle retting; past and past participle retted)

  1. (transitive) To prepare (flax, hemp etc.) for further processing by soaking, which facilitates separation of fibers from the woody parts of the stem.
    • 1989, Keith Bosley, translating Elias Lönnrot, The Kalevala, XLVIII:
      the hemp was retted / and soon the retting was done / and swiftly it was hung up / and hurriedly it was dried […].
    • 2006, Thomas Pynchon, Against the Day, Vintage 2007, page 621:
      the lowland nearly silent except for water-thrushes, the harvested fields, the smell of hops being dried in kilns, flax pulled up and piled in sheaves, in local practice not to be retted till the spring
Translations Adjective
  1. retired

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