views updated May 23 2018

leave1 / lēv/ • v. (past and past part. left / left/ ) 1. [tr.] go away from: she left New York on June 6 [intr.] we were almost the last to leave the Bruins left for Toronto on Monday. ∎  depart from permanently: at the age of sixteen he left home. ∎  cease attending (a school or college) or working for (an organization): she is leaving NBC after 20 years.2. [tr.] allow to remain: the parts he disliked he would alter, and the parts he didn't dislike he'd leave. ∎  (be left) remain to be used or dealt with: we've even got one of the plum puddings left over from last year a retired person with no mortgage left to pay. ∎  go away from a place without taking (someone or something): we had not left any of our belongings behind| fig. women had been left behind in the struggle for pay equality. ∎  abandon (a spouse or partner): her boyfriend left her for another woman. ∎  have as (a surviving relative) after one's death: he leaves a wife and three children. ∎  bequeath: he left $500 to the Police Athletic League. Harry had left her $5,000 a year for life. 3. [tr.] cause (someone or something) to be in a particular state or position: he'll leave you in no doubt about what he thinks I'll leave the door open the children were left with feelings of loss. ∎  let (someone) do or deal with something without offering help or assistance: infected people are often rejected by family and friends, leaving them to face this chronic condition alone. ∎  cause to remain as a trace or record: dark fruit that would leave purple stains on the table napkins fig. they leave the impression that they can be bullied. ∎  deposit or entrust to be kept, collected, or attended to: she left a note for me. ∎  [tr.] (leave something to) entrust a decision, choice, or action to (someone else, esp. someone considered better qualified): the choice of which link to take is generally left up to the reader.• n. (in pool, billiards, snooker, croquet, and other games) the position of the balls after a shot.PHRASES: be left at the post be beaten from the start of a race or competition.be left for dead be abandoned as being almost dead or certain to die.be left to oneself be allowed to do what one wants: women, left to themselves, would make the world a beautiful place to live in. ∎  be in the position of being alone or solitary: left to himself, he removed his shirt and tie.leave someone/something alonesee alone.leave someone be refrain from disturbing or interfering with someone.leave someone cold fail to interest someone: the Romantic poets left him cold.leave hold of cease holding.leave it at that abstain from further comment or action: if you are not sure of the answers, say so, and leave it at that.leave much (or a lot) to be desired be highly unsatisfactory.PHRASAL VERBS: leave off discontinue (an activity): the dog left off chasing the sheep. ∎  come to an end: he resumed the other story at the point where the previous author had left off.leave something off omit to put on: a bolt may have been left off the plane's forward door during production.leave someone/something out fail to include: it seemed unkind to leave Daisy out; so she was invited, too [as adj.] (left out) Janet was feeling rather left out. DERIVATIVES: leav·er n.leave2 • n. 1. (also leave of absence) time when one has permission to be absent from work or from duty in the armed forces: Joe was home on leave| he took a leave of absence last year. 2. [often with infin.] permission: he is seeking leave to appeal the injunction.PHRASES: by (or with) your leave with your permission: with your leave, I will send him your address.take one's leave formal say goodbye: he went to take his leave of his hostess.take leave of one's sensessee sense.leave3 • v. put forth leaves.


views updated May 17 2018

A. have as remainder, cause or allow to remain;

B. depart (from). OE. lǣfan = OS. -lēbian, OHG. leiban (cf. OHG. bilīban, G. bleiben remain), ON. leifa, Goth. -laibjan :- Gmc. *laiƀjan remain, continue, f. *laiƀō remainder (OE. lāf remainder, ON. leif heritage, etc., of which the vars. *līb- appear in LIFE, LIVE1. Referred to an IE. base *loip- *leip- *lip- stick, adhere, repr. by Gr. lïparēs perserving, importunate, lipos grease, Lith. lìpti, OSl. lĭpěti adhere, Skr. lip-, rip— smear, adhere to.


views updated Jun 11 2018

leave leave no stone unturned try every possible expedient; the expression is used by Pliny in his Letters. The term was said by the sophist Zenobius to derive from a story of hidden Persian treasure.
leave well alone a variant of let well alone.

See also leave the door open, left2.


views updated May 23 2018


To give or dispose of by will. Willful departure with intent to remain away. Permission or authorization to do something.

Leave of court is permission from the judge to take some action in a lawsuit that requires an absence or delay. An attorney might request a leave of court in order to file an amended pleading, a formal declaration of a claim, or a defense.




views updated May 29 2018

leave1 permission. OE. lēaf = OHG. *louba. (MHG loube, G. †lauƀe) :- WGmc. *lauƀā, whence *laubjan permit (OE. līefan, etc.). The form leave repr. OE. obl. forms. The etymol. meaning is prob. ‘pleasure, approval’, and the base that of LOVE.