cast off

See also: castoff and cast-off



cast off (third-person singular simple present casts off, present participle casting off, simple past and past participle casted off) (simple past and past participle more properly cast off)

  1. (transitive) To discard or reject something.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 1, in The Celebrity:
      However, with the dainty volume my quondam friend sprang into fame. At the same time he cast off the chrysalis of a commonplace existence.
  2. (transitive, intransitive, nautical) To let go (a cable or rope securing a vessel to a buoy, wharf, etc.) so that the vessel may make way.
  3. (intransitive, knitting) To finish the last row of knitted stitches and remove them securely from the needle.
  4. (printing, historical) To estimate the amount of space required by the type used for the given copy.
    • 2012, Christa Jansohn, Problems of Editing (page 102)
      To conserve type, copy was "cast off"; that is, type needed for the initial pages was estimated so that the pages need not be composed in the same sequence as the copy.


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