or take-off

[ teyk-awf, -of ]
See synonyms for takeoff on Thesaurus.com
  1. a taking or setting off; the leaving of the ground, as in leaping or in beginning a flight in an airplane.

  2. a taking off from a starting point, as in beginning a race.

  1. the place or point at which a person or thing takes off.

  2. a humorous or satirical imitation; burlesque.

  3. Machinery. a shaft geared to a main shaft for running auxiliary machinery.

  4. a branch connection to a pipe, electric line, etc.

Origin of takeoff

First recorded in 1820–30; noun use of verb phrase take off

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use takeoff in a sentence

  • Tasso gripped the take-off switch, running her fingers over the smooth metal.

    Second Variety | Philip Kindred Dick
  • The take-off of the Brainchild was not so easy as it might have appeared to anyone who watched it from the outside.

    Unwise Child | Gordon Randall Garrett
  • Just as the stranger in his airplane was warming up his motor for a take-off, he saw two boys come out on the end of the meadow.

    Red Dynamite | Roy J. Snell
  • Kerk closed the lock himself and they found couches as the take-off horn sounded.

    Deathworld | Harry Harrison
  • The take-off siren was hooting now, the close lock light blinking an angry message from the bridge.

    Deathworld | Harry Harrison

British Dictionary definitions for take off

take off

  1. (tr) to remove or discard (a garment)

  2. (intr) (of an aircraft) to become airborne

  1. informal to set out or cause to set out on a journey: they took off for Spain

  2. (tr) (of a disease) to prove fatal to; kill

  3. (tr) informal to mimic or imitate, esp in an amusing or satirical manner

  4. (intr) informal to become successful or popular, esp suddenly

  1. the act or process of making an aircraft airborne

  2. the stage of a country's economic development when rapid and sustained economic growth is first achieved

  1. informal an act of mimicry; imitation

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 takeoff


Remove, as in Take off your coat and stay for a while, or I took my foot off the brake. [c. 1300]

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