stand off

stand off  {v.}
1. To stay at a distance; stay apart.
At parties, Mr. Jones goes around talking to everyone, but Mrs. Jones is shy and stands off.
2. To keep (someone or something) from coming near or winning.
The soldiers defending the fort stood off a large band of Indians.
The other schools wanted to beat our team and win the championship, but our boys stood them all off.
Contrast: GIVE GROUND.
Categories: verb

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