verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- to finish or dispose of quickly: They polished off a gallon of ice cream between them.
- to subdue or get rid of someone: The fighter polished off his opponent in the first round.
Origin of polish
SYNONYMS FOR polish
British Dictionary definitions for polish off (1 of 3)
verb (tr, adverb) informal
British Dictionary definitions for polish off (2 of 3)
Derived Formspolishable, adjectivepolisher, noun
Word Origin for polish
British Dictionary definitions for polish off (3 of 3)
Idioms and Phrases with polish off (1 of 2)
Finish or dispose of, especially quickly and easily. For example, We polished off the pie in no time, or If everyone helps, we can polish off this job today. This usage, dating from the early 1800s, came from boxing, where it originally meant “to defeat an opponent quickly and easily.” By the 1830s it was used more generally.
Idioms and Phrases with polish off (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with polish
- polish off
- polish the apple
- spit and polish