Also, drop in or over. Pay a brief, casual, and usually unannounced visit. For example, I asked her to drop by whenever she was in the neighborhood, or Joan loves to have friends drop in, or We'd love to drop over but we haven't time on this trip. The first term dates from the first half of the 1900s; drop in is from the mid-1600s and drop over from the late 1800s.
Words nearby drop by
MORE ABOUT DROP BY
What does drop by mean?
Drop by means to briefly or casually visit a place or to stay there for a short time.
A person who drops by a place doesn’t stay there for very long, as in She promised to at least drop by whenever she was in town.
Sometimes, the phrase implies that it is done as one of several stops, as in I might drop by the post office on my way to the grocery store.
The similar phrases drop in, drop over, stop by, stop in, and stop over all mean the same thing, as in Janet dropped in just to say hello.
In many cases, these terms imply that the visit was unannounced or unexpected, as in You’ll never guess who dropped by earlier.
Example: Did your sister every drop by to get that saw that we borrowed?
Where does drop by come from?
The first records of the verb phrase drop by come from the first half of the 1900s. Drop in is much older, having been used since the 1600s. The first records of drop over come from the 1800s.
Usually, to drop by is to stop some place temporarily—or at least it’s intended or implied to be a temporary stop. In many cases, when a person drops by a place, it’s as one of multiple stops they are making. Sometimes, though, when a person says they are going to drop by, the visit ends up being much longer than anticipated. On the other hand, drop by is sometimes used when a person doesn’t want to or can’t commit to visiting, as in I might drop by today if I get the chance.
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How is drop by used in real life?
Drop by is typically used in the context of short visits or brief stays. It sometimes implies that such a visit was unannounced.
Last night the team was surprised with a guest appearance by this avid hockey fan and great Canadian. 🇨🇦🎤
Any guesses who dropped by to say hi?! pic.twitter.com/YsToGmDhdn
— #WorldJuniors (@HC_WJC) December 1, 2020
This is a very good place to access by bike, if you have the miles and hills in your legs. One day I will drop by to see this. Seems appropriate to have found a remnant of a severed civilisation this week. Who will be lantern bearers this time? https://t.co/PHo9oxM9rp
— Katy Rodda Still Wants 2m (@KatyCycles) December 10, 2020
It’s the kind of morning where Fall just dropped by for a quick cup of coffee and whispered, “Just checking in, I’ll be back soon.”
— Michael St James (@michaelstjames) August 8, 2019
Try using drop by!
Is drop by used correctly in the following sentence?
My cousin dropped by for tea but he had to leave for an appointment.
How to use drop by in a sentence
During an emergency that ratio could be allowed to drop to 8.5 people per orbit.Exclusive: U.S. Drone Fleet at ‘Breaking Point,’ Air Force Says|Dave Majumdar|January 5, 2015|DAILY BEAST
But with the pipeline, transportation costs drop and production would be higher.
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Those snakes attacked unwitting passers-by, or invaded homes and hotels.The Buddhist Business of Poaching Animals for Good Karma|Brendon Hong|December 28, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Horniness packs side-by-side by with a deeper loneliness along the walls of The Park.The Craziest Date Night for Single Jews, Where Mistletoe Is Ditched for Shots|Emily Shire|December 26, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Before he could finish the sentence the Hole-keeper said snappishly, "Well, drop out again—quick!"Davy and The Goblin|Charles E. Carryl
All along the highways and by-paths of our literature we encounter much that pertains to this "queen of plants."
At a quarter past seven he took his leave and we let drop our anchor where we were, off Cape Tekke.Gallipoli Diary, Volume I|Ian Hamilton
John was baptizing at a large pool called Ænon-by-Saleim,—probably allegorical, meaning “Fountain of Repose.”Solomon and Solomonic Literature|Moncure Daniel Conway
The sewing-machine made a resounding clatter in the room; it was of a ponderous, by-gone make.The Awakening and Selected Short Stories|Kate Chopin