better-off

[ bet-er-awf, -of ]
/ ˈbɛt ərˈɔf, -ˈɒf /
|

adjective

being in better circumstances, especially economically: Only the better-off nations can afford to send probes into space.

Origin of better-off

First recorded in 1860–65

Definition for better off (2 of 2)

Origin of better

1
before 900; Middle English bettre, Old English bet(t)(e)ra; cognate with Old High German bezziro (German besser), Dutch beter, Old Norse betr, Gothic batiza, equivalent to bat- (cognate with Old High German baz (adv.) better; akin to boot2) + -iza comparative suffix; suggested relation to Sanskrit bhadrá- “fortunate” is doubtful. See best
SYNONYMS FOR better
Related formsun·bet·tered, adjective
Can be confusedbetter bettor
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for better off (1 of 2)

Word Origin for better

Old English betera; related to Old Norse betri, Gothic batiza, Old High German beziro

British Dictionary definitions for better off (2 of 2)

better

2

esp US bettor

/ (ˈbɛtə) /

noun

a person who bets
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Idioms and Phrases with better off (1 of 2)

better off


In a more favorable position or financial circumstances. For example, They were better off flying than driving there, or They were better off than most of their neighbors. This phrase is the comparative form of well off. [Mid-1800s]

Idioms and Phrases with better off (2 of 2)

better


In addition to the idioms beginning with better

  • better half
  • better late than never
  • better off
  • better part of
  • better safe than sorry
  • better than

also see:

  • against one's better judgment
  • all better
  • all the better
  • discretion is the better part of valor
  • for better or for worse
  • get better
  • get the better (best) of
  • go one better
  • had better (best)
  • know better
  • seen better days
  • so much the better
  • sooner the better
  • take a turn for the better
  • think better of
  • you'd better believe it

Also see underbest.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.