to go out of or away from, as a place: to leave the house.
to depart from permanently; quit: to leave a job.
to let remain or have remaining behind after going, disappearing, ceasing, etc.: I left my wallet home. The wound left a scar.
to allow to remain in the same place, condition, etc.: Is there any coffee left?
to let stay or be as specified: to leave a door unlocked.
to let (a person or animal) remain in a position to do something without interference: We left him to his work.
to let (a thing) remain for action or decision: We left the details to the lawyer.
to stop; cease; give up: He left music to study law.
to disregard; neglect: We will leave this for the moment and concentrate on the major problem.
to give for use after one's death or departure: to leave all one's money to charity.
to have remaining after death: He leaves a wife and three children.
to have as a remainder after subtraction: 2 from 4 leaves 2.
Nonstandard. let1 (defs. 1, 2, 6).
to go away, depart, or set out: We leave for Europe tomorrow.
Idioms about leave
Also let alone . to refrain from annoying or interfering with: Those kids wouldn't leave the dog alone, and he eventually turned on them.She finally shouted, “Leave me alone!” at the man who had been following her for several blocks.
to allow or cause (someone) to be left on their own: Leave him alone—he wants to rest.They left me all alone, and I couldn’t figure out how to get back home.
leave well enough alone. alone (def. 8).
Other substitutions of leave for let are generally regarded as nonstandard: Let (not Leave ) us sit down and talk this over. Let (not Leave ) her do it her own way. The police wouldn't let (not leave ) us cross the barriers. See also let1.
- leav·er, noun
Other definitions for leave (2 of 3)
permission to do something: to beg leave to go elsewhere.
permission to be absent, as from work or military duty: The firm offers a maternity leave as part of its benefit program.
How to use leave in a sentence
The team then leaves on a West Coast trip with four games in six days.Bradley Beal will miss Friday’s game against the Knicks for rest | Ava Wallace | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
To serve, divide among bowls and top with plenty of basil leaves.
If that didn’t convince Garnett’s peers, they all understood what might be ahead — for them and for professional basketball — after they left that hotel room.An NBA experiment lets draft prospects skip college, stay home and get paid to play | Michael Lee | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
The senior was poised to reestablish himself after a foot injury left him in a boot and forced him to miss six games last season.For this college football team, covid means the season starts in February — with Senior Day | Glynn A. Hill | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
Democratic leaders of the committee recently introduced a bill to substitute paid leave for unpaid leave under the Family and Medical leave Act for federal employees needing time off for personal or family medical reasons.Federal workers could get more paid leave if covid-19 prevents them from working | Eric Yoder | February 10, 2021 | Washington Post
“We all shook hands and my client told me to leave,” he said.
Some seventy-plus countries currently offer some paternity leave or parental leave days reserved for the father.
But outside of a few European countries and Quebec, this leave is usually two weeks or less and usually unpaid.
Certainly paid paternity leave is part of it (and in the U.S., we need paid maternity and paternity leave).
And then when businesses leave the state, they want to know why.
They are very urgent questions; our sons and daughters will have to begin to deal with them from the moment they leave college.The Salvaging Of Civilisation | H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
As Perker said this, he looked towards the door, with an evident desire to render the leave-taking as brief as possible.The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club, v. 2(of 2) | Charles Dickens
Now for the tempering of the Gudgeons, I leave it to the judgment of the Workman; but a word or two of the polishing of it.Tintinnalogia, or, the Art of Ringing | Richard Duckworth and Fabian Stedman
We can do as we like with Hindu and Mussalman so long as we leave their respective religions untouched.The Red Year | Louis Tracy
“You must leave this house this moment,” she cried, with a stamp, with gleaming eyes and very pale.Checkmate | Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
British Dictionary definitions for leave (1 of 3)
(also intr) to go or depart (from a person or place)
to cause to remain behind, often by mistake, in a place: he often leaves his keys in his coat
to cause to be or remain in a specified state: paying the bill left him penniless
to renounce or abandon: to leave a political movement
to refrain from consuming or doing something: the things we have left undone
to result in; cause: childhood problems often leave emotional scars
to allow to be or remain subject to another person or thing: leave the past to look after itself
to entrust or commit: leave the shopping to her
to submit in place of one's personal appearance: will you leave your name and address?
to pass in a specified direction: flying out of the country, we left the cliffs on our left
to be survived by (members of one's family): he leaves a wife and two children
to bequeath or devise: he left his investments to his children
(tr) to have as a remainder: 37 – 14 leaves 23
not standard to permit; let
leave be informal to leave undisturbed
leave go or leave hold of not standard to stop holding
leave it at that informal to take a matter no further
leave much to be desired to be very unsatisfactory
leave someone alone
Also: let alone See let 1 (def. 7)
to permit to stay or be alone
leave someone to himself not to control or direct someone
- leaver, noun
British Dictionary definitions for leave (2 of 3)
permission to do something: he was granted leave to speak
by your leave or with your leave with your permission
permission to be absent, as from a place of work or duty: leave of absence
the duration of such absence: ten days' leave
a farewell or departure (esp in the phrase take (one's) leave)
on leave officially excused from work or duty
take leave to say farewell (to)
take leave of one's senses to go mad or become irrational
British Dictionary definitions for leave (3 of 3)
(intr) to produce or grow leaves
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with leave
In addition to the idioms beginning with leave
- leave a bad taste in one's mouth
- leave alone
- leave a lot to be desired
- leave flat
- leave hanging
- leave holding the bag
- leave in the lurch
- leave no stone unturned
- leave off
- leave one cold
- leave open
- leave out
- leave out in the cold
- leave out of account
- leave someone alone
- leave someone in peace
- leave someone in the lurch
- leave someone to his or her resources
- leave the door open
- leave to someone's own devices
- leave to someone's tender mercies
- leave well enough alone
- leave without a leg to stand on
- leave word
- absent without leave
- (leave) high and dry
- (leave) out in the cold
- take it or leave it
- take leave of
- take one's leave
Also see underlet.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.