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  1. #1
    Offroad's Avatar
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    to see off

    Dear teachers...

    A dictionary defines this phrasal verb as:

    See off:
    To take leave of (someone):
    • saw the guests off at the door;
    • went to the airport to see us off.
    In this case, see off means 'to take/drive somebody somewhere'.


    Another Dictionary defines it as:

    See off:

    to defeat someone or something, or to deal with them effectively so that they can no longer cause harm:
    • England saw off Luxembourg 5-0.
    • He may not have seen off the challengers for the leadership of the party, but he has at least silenced them for a while.


    In this case 'see off' means 'to defeat, beat, win, overcome (challenges)':

    England beat/won Ivory Cost 1-0.
    We have overcome all try-outs they submitted us to.

    Are my interpretations (in red) on the right track?

    Many thanks.

  2. #2
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    Re: to see off

    Hi,
    You're not quite righ on the first one. You can see your son off to school without driving him there - you just are there to say goodbye as he leaves.

    I've never seen the second one. It must be a used elsewhere.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  3. #3
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    Re: to see off

    Very good.

    UE phrasal verbs defines 'see off' as:

    Meaning: Chase somebody or something away
    Example: A cat came into the back garden but the dog soon SAW it OFF.

    and

    Meaning: Go to the airport, station, etc., to say goodbye to someone
    Example: I went to the station to SEE them OFF.

    I missed the latter.

  4. #4
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    Re: to see off

    I could go to the airport to see someone off, but I could also see them off from the front door of my house, as they get into the taxi that's going to take them to the airport.

    I think the sporting context is very similar to the one where the example of the dog seeing off the cat.

    Serena Williams saw off her opponent in straight sets.
    I found a burglar in my house but I soon saw him off by waving a large knife at him!

  5. #5
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    Re: to see off

    Thank you for your efforts.

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