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Webster 1913 Edition


Off

Off

(ŏf; 115)
,
adv.
[OE.
of
, orig. the same word as R.
of
, prep., AS.
of
, adv. & prep. √194. See
Of
.]
In a general sense, denoting from or away from; as:
1.
Denoting distance or separation;
as, the house is a mile
off
.
2.
Denoting the action of removing or separating; separation;
as, to take
off
the hat or cloak; to cut
off
, to pare
off
, to clip
off
, to peel
off
, to tear
off
, to march
off
, to fly
off
, and the like.
3.
Denoting a leaving, abandonment, departure, abatement, interruption, or remission;
as, the fever goes
off
; the pain goes
off
; the game is
off
; all bets are
off
.
4.
Denoting a different direction; not on or towards: away;
as, to look
off
.
5.
Denoting opposition or negation.
[Obs.]
The questions no way touch upon puritanism, either
off
or on.
Bp. Sanderson.
From off
,
off from; off.
“A live coal . . . taken with the tongs from off the altar.”
Is. vi. 6.
Off and on
.
(a)
Not constantly; not regularly; now and then; occasionally.
(b)
(Naut.)
On different tacks, now toward, and now away from, the land.
To be off
.
(a)
To depart; to escape;
as, he
was off
without a moment’s warning
.
(b)
To be abandoned, as an agreement or purpose;
as, the bet was declared
to be off
.
[Colloq.]
To come off
,
To cut off
,
To fall off
,
To go off
,
etc. See under
Come
,
Cut
,
Fall
,
Go
, etc.
To get off
.
(a)
To utter; to discharge;
as,
to get off
a joke
.
(b)
To go away; to escape;
as,
to get off
easily from a trial
.
[Colloq.]
To take off
To do a take-off on
,
To take off
,
to mimic, lampoon, or impersonate.
To tell off
(a)
(Mil.)
,
to divide and practice a regiment or company in the several formations, preparatory to marching to the general parade for field exercises.
Farrow.
(b)
to rebuke (a person) for an improper action; to scold; to reprimand.
To be well off
,
to be in good condition.
To be ill off
,
To be badly off
,
to be in poor condition.

Off

(ŏf; 115)
,
int
erj.
Away; begone; – a command to depart.

Off

,
p
rep.
Not on; away from;
as, to be
off
one's legs or
off
the bed; two miles
off
the shore.
Addison.
Off hand
.
See
Offhand
.
Off side
(Football)
,
out of play; – said when a player has got in front of the ball in a scrimmage, or when the ball has been last touched by one of his own side behind him.
To be off color
,
(a)
to be of a wrong color.
(b)
to be mildly obscene.
To be off one's food
or
To be off one's feed
, (
Colloq.
)
to have no appetite; to be eating less than usual.

Off

,
Adj.
1.
On the farther side; most distant; on the side of an animal or a team farthest from the driver when he is on foot; in the United States, the right side;
as, the
off
horse or ox in a team, in distinction from the
nigh
or
near
horse or ox; the
off
leg.
2.
Designating a time when one is not strictly attentive to business or affairs, or is absent from his post, and, hence, a time when affairs are not urgent;
as, he took an
off
day for fishing: an
off
year in politics
.
“In the off season.”
Thackeray.
Off side
.
(a)
The right hand side in driving; the farther side.
See
Gee
.
(b)
(Cricket)
See
Off
,
Noun.

Off

,
Noun.
(Cricket)
The side of the field that is on the right of the wicket keeper.
2.
A dead body; carrion.
Shak.
3.
That which is thrown away as worthless or unfit for use; refuse; rubbish.
The
offals
of other professions.
South.

Webster 1828 Edition


Off

OFF

,
Adj.
auf.
Most distant; as the off horse in a team.

Definition 2022


off

off

See also: of, -off, off., off-, and Off.

English

Alternative forms

Adverb

off (not comparable)

  1. In a direction away from the speaker or object.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 4, in The Celebrity:
      No matter how early I came down, I would find him on the veranda, smoking cigarettes, or [] . And at last I began to realize in my harassed soul that all elusion was futile, and to take such holidays as I could get, when he was off with a girl, in a spirit of thankfulness.
    He drove off in a cloud of smoke.
  2. Into a state of non-operation; into a state of non-existence.
    Please switch off the light when you leave.   die off
  3. So as to be removed or separated.
    He bit off more than he could chew.
    Some branches were sawn off.

Usage notes

  • Used in many phrasal verbs, off is an adverbial particle often mistakenly thought of as a preposition. (It can be used as a preposition, but such usage is rare and usually informal; see below.)

Synonyms

Antonyms

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Adjective

off (comparative more off, superlative most off)

  1. Inoperative, disabled.
    All the lights are off.
  2. Rancid, rotten.
    This milk is off!
  3. (cricket) In, or towards the half of the field away from the batsman's legs; the right side for a right-handed batsman.
  4. Less than normal, in temperament or in result.
    sales are off this quarter
  5. Circumstanced (as in well off, better off, poorly off).
    • 2008, Kiron K. Skinner; Bruce Bueno de Mesquita, Serhiy Kudelia, The Strategy of Campaigning:
      'Are you better off now than you were four years ago?' With that pointed question, Ronald Reagan defined the 1980 presidential election as a 92 referendum on Jimmy Carter's economic policies
  6. Started on the way.
    off to see the wizard
    And they're off! Whatsmyname takes an early lead, with Remember The Mane behind by a nose.
    • 1990, Peter Pinney, The glass cannon: a Bougainville diary, 1944-45:
      Let them glimpse a green man coming at them with intent, and they're off like a bride's nighty. Even after capture some of them will seize every attempt to suicide — they just can't live with the tremendous loss of face.
  7. Far; off to the side.
    the off horse or ox in a team, in distinction from the nigh or near horse
    • 1908, W[illiam] B[lair] M[orton] Ferguson, Zollenstein, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 29686887 , chapter IV:
      So this was my future home, I thought! [] Backed by towering hills, the but faintly discernible purple line of the French boundary off to the southwest, a sky of palest Gobelin flecked with fat, fleecy little clouds, it in truth looked a dear little city; the city of one's dreams.
    • 1937, Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Harper Perennial (2000), p.151:
      He came in, took a look and squinched down into a chair in an off corner and didn’t open his mouth.
  8. Designating a time when one is not strictly attentive to business or affairs, or is absent from a post, and, hence, a time when affairs are not urgent.
    He took an off day for fishing. an off year in politics;the off season
  9. (of a dish on a menu) Presently unavailable.
    I'll have the chicken please.
    Sorry, chicken's off today.

Antonyms

Derived terms

Translations

Preposition

off

  1. Used to indicate movement away from a position on
    I took it off the table.; Come off the roof!
  2. (colloquial) Out of the possession of.
    He didn't buy it off him. He stole it off him.
  3. Away from or not on.
    He's off the computer, but he's still on the phone.; Keep off the grass.
  4. Disconnected or subtracted from.
    We've been off the grid for three days now.; He took 20% off the list price.
  5. Distant from.
    We're just off the main road.; The island is 23 miles off the cape.
  6. No longer wanting or taking.
    He's been off his feed since Tuesday.; He's off his meds again.
  7. Placed after a number (of products or parts, as if a unit), in commerce or engineering.
    Tantalum bar 6 off 3/8" Dia × 12" — Atom, Great Britain Atomic Energy Authority, 1972
    samples submitted … 12 off Thermistors type 1K3A531 … — BSI test report for shock and vibration testing, 2000
    I'd like to re-order those printer cartridges, let's say 5-off.

Antonyms

Derived terms

Translations

Verb

off (third-person singular simple present offs, present participle offing, simple past and past participle offed)

  1. (transitive, slang) To kill.
    He got in the way so I had him offed.
  2. (transitive, Singapore) To switch off.
    Can you off the light?

Translations

Noun

off (uncountable)

  1. (rare) beginning; starting point
    He has been very obviously an untrustworthy narrator right from the off.

Statistics

Most common English words before 1923: things · left · part · #160: off · took · nothing · God

Central Franconian

Alternative forms

  • ov (alternative spelling)
  • ob (western Moselle Franconian; otherwise as a variant, but only in the sense of “if”)

Etymology

From Old High German (*)ova, northern variant of oba.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ɔf/

Conjunction

off

  1. (most dialects) if (in the sense of whether)
    Ich weeß net, off dat stemmp.
    I don’t know if that’s true.
  2. (Ripuarian) or
    Dat mösse foffzig off sechsig Mann jewäs senn.
    They must’ve been fifty or sixty people.
    Donnersdaach off Friedaach moss ich nohm Finanzamp.
    I need to go to the tax office Thursday or Friday.

Usage notes

  • Though formerly generally applicable, the Ripuarian off (“or”) is now used only in vague statements or estimates. The word odder is used in order to express an actual alternative.