To play off
Play Play, v. t. 1. To put in action or motion; as, to play cannon upon a fortification; to play a trump. [1913 Webster]

First Peace and Silence all disputes control, Then Order plays the soul. --Herbert. [1913 Webster]

2. To perform music upon; as, to play the flute or the organ. [1913 Webster]

3. To perform, as a piece of music, on an instrument; as, to play a waltz on the violin. [1913 Webster]

4. To bring into sportive or wanton action; to exhibit in action; to execute; as, to play tricks. [1913 Webster]

Nature here Wantoned as in her prime, and played at will Her virgin fancies. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

5. To act or perform (a play); to represent in music action; as, to play a comedy; also, to act in the character of; to represent by acting; to simulate; to behave like; as, to play King Lear; to play the woman. [1913 Webster]

Thou canst play the rational if thou wilt. --Sir W. Scott. [1913 Webster]

6. To engage in, or go together with, as a contest for amusement or for a wager or prize; as, to play a game at baseball. [1913 Webster]

7. To keep in play, as a hooked fish, in order to land it. [1913 Webster]

{To play hob}, to play the part of a mischievous spirit; to work mischief.

{To play off}, to display; to show; to put in exercise; as, to play off tricks.

{To play one's cards}, to manage one's means or opportunities; to contrive.

{Played out}, tired out; exhausted; at the end of one's resources. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To play off — Play Play, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Played}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Playing}.] [OE. pleien, AS. plegian, plegan, to play, akin to plega play, game, quick motion, and probably to OS. plegan to promise, pledge, D. plegen to care for, attend to, be wont, G.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To pass off — Pass Pass, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Passed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Passing}.] [F. passer, LL. passare, fr. L. passus step, or from pandere, passum, to spread out, lay open. See {Pace}.] 1. To go; to move; to proceed; to be moved or transferred from one… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To come off — Come Come, v. i. [imp. {Came}; p. p. {Come}; p. pr & vb. n. {Coming}.] [OE. cumen, comen, AS. cuman; akin to OS.kuman, D. komen, OHG. queman, G. kommen, Icel. koma, Sw. komma, Dan. komme, Goth. giman, L. venire (gvenire), Gr. ? to go, Skr. gam.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut off — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To set off — Set Set (s[e^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Set}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Setting}.] [OE. setten, AS. setton; akin to OS. settian, OFries. setta, D. zetten, OHG. sezzen, G. setzen, Icel. setja, Sw. s[ a]tta, Dan. s?tte, Goth. satjan; causative from the root… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To strike off — Strike Strike, v. t. [imp. {Struck}; p. p. {Struck}, {Stricken}({Stroock}, {Strucken}, Obs.); p. pr. & vb. n. {Striking}. Struck is more commonly used in the p. p. than stricken.] [OE. striken to strike, proceed, flow, AS. str[=i]can to go,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cast off — Cast Cast (k[.a]st), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cast}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Casting}.] [Cf. Dan. kaste, Icel. & Sw. kasta; perh. akin to L. {gerere} to bear, carry. E. jest.] 1. To send or drive by force; to throw; to fling; to hurl; to impel. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To shift off — Shift Shift (sh[i^]ft), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Shifted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Shifting}.] [OE. shiften, schiften, to divide, change, remove. AS. sciftan to divide; akin to LG. & D. schiften to divide, distinguish, part Icel. skipta to divide, to part,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To stand off — Stand Stand (st[a^]nd), v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Stood} (st[oo^]d); p. pr. & vb. n. {Standing}.] [OE. standen; AS. standan; akin to OFries. stonda, st[=a]n, D. staan, OS. standan, st[=a]n, OHG. stantan, st[=a]n, G. stehen, Icel. standa, Dan. staae,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To hold off — Hold Hold, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Held}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Holding}. {Holden}, p. p., is obs. in elegant writing, though still used in legal language.] [OE. haldan, D. houden, OHG. hoten, Icel. halda, Dan. holde, Sw. h[*a]lla, Goth. haldan to feed,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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