I. preposition 1. at or to the far side of (something), typically so as to be hidden by it • the recording machinery was kept behind screens
• the sun came out from behind a cloud.
2. underlying (something) but not apparent to the observer • the agony behind his decision to retire.
3. following or further back than (another member of a moving group) • we were stuck behind a slow-moving tractor.
4. at the back of (someone), after they have passed through a door • she ran out of the room, slamming the door behind her.
5. in support of or giving guidance to (someone else) • whatever you decide to do, I’ll be behind you
• the power behind the throne.
6. controlling or responsible for (an event or plan) • the chances were that he was behind the death of the girl
• the meticulous organization behind the coup.
7. after the departure or death of (someone) • he left behind him a manuscript which was subsequently published.
8. less advanced than (someone or something) in achievement or development • the government admitted it is ten years behind the West in PC technology.
9. having a lower score than (another competitor) • Woosnam moved to ten under par, five shots behind Fred Couples.
II. adverb 1. at or to the far side of something • Campbell grabbed him from behind.
2. in a particular place after leaving or after others have moved on • don’t leave me behind.
3. further back than other members of a moving group • Ben led the way, with Joe a short distance behind.
4. (in a contest or match) having a score lower than that of the opposing team • England were still 382 runs behind.
5. late in accomplishing a task • I’m getting behind with my work.
6. in arrears • she was behind with her rent.
III. noun 1.
‹informal› a person’s buttocks
• she slid inelegantly down a few steps on her behind.
[Australian Rules] a kick that sends the ball over a behind line, or a touch that sends it between the inner posts, scoring one point.
– origin Old English behindan, bihindan, from bi ‘by’ + hindan ‘from behind’.