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[awf-lim-its, of-] /ˈɔfˈlɪm ɪts, ˈɒf-/
forbidden to be patronized, frequented, used, etc., by certain persons:
The tavern is off-limits to soldiers.
Origin of off-limits
An Americanism dating back to 1950-55 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for off-limits
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Historical Examples
  • Those are complicated machines, those things, and they're off-limits to the likes of you and me.

    Little Brother

    Cory Doctorow
  • This section of the building was off-limits to the other patients in the Institute, but Stanton, the star border, had free rein.

    Anything You Can Do Gordon Randall Garrett
  • Commanders were frequently quizzed on the probable effects of the imposition of off-limits sanctions or base closings.

Word Origin and History for off-limits

"forbidden," by 1881, U.S. military academies jargon, from off (adv.) + limit (n.). Earlier (1857) it was applied to cadets, etc., who were in violation of the limitations on their movement and behavior.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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