On / off
English grammar (See all our English grammar tips)
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On / offPrincipal meanings of ON:
• the idea of contact:
on the beach on top of the sand, at the seaside
on the bus inside the bus, sitting in the bus
Try on these jeans. Wear these jeans for a moment to see if they fit you.
• precise dates:
on the 7th of August
to be on time not to be late, to arrive at the right time
• movement, continuation:
to move on, to go on, to carry on to continue, to advance, to proceed
Come on! Let's go! Hurry up!
• activating things:
Switch on the light. Press the light switch so that there is light in the room.
I'm on duty. I'm working right now.
Principal meanings of OFF (the opposite of on):
Horatio fended off the jaguar. Horatio prevented the jaguar from approaching him.
-Where is the car? -It's off to the left. -Where is the car? -It's over there to the left.
• departure, separation:
Bruno set off for America. Bruno departed for America.
• interruption, stopping actions:
Switch off the light. Press the light switch so that there is no longer light in the room.
I'm off duty. I'm not working right now.
• conclusion, completion:
I paid off my loan. I finished paying my loan back.
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