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Thread: put off

  1. #1
    beachboy is offline Key Member
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    put off

    I understand "to put something off" and "to postpone" are synonyms, but not interchangeable. How can I rephrase the sentence "We'll have to postpone the test to Friday" using the phrasal verb above, without a change in meaning?

  2. #2
    Rover_KE is online now Moderator
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    Re: put off

    We'd like you to try first.

  3. #3
    beachboy is offline Key Member
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    Re: put off

    I'm not sure about the preposition to use, among other things. So, let's say "We'll have to put off the test until Friday". While googling, I ran into sentences like "We'll have to put off the wedding until September", but I wasn't sure if it conveyed the same meaning (the wedding will be in September).

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    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: put off

    You could replace "put off" with "postpone" in those sentences without changing the meaning.
    I am not a teacher.

  5. #5
    Rover_KE is online now Moderator
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    Re: put off

    You are right, beachboy.

    You could also say 'We'll have to put the test off until Friday', as 'put off' is a separable phrasal verb (the two words can be separated).

  6. #6
    beachboy is offline Key Member
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    Re: put off

    Yes, I almost brought it up too (the separation), but decided not to complicate things. So, as for the prepositions, I say "We'll have to postpone it to Friday" and "we'll have to put it off until Friday". Is that right?

  7. #7
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    Re: put off

    You could use either one

  8. #8
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: put off

    Quote Originally Posted by beachboy View Post
    I understand "to put something off" and "to postpone" are synonyms, but not interchangeable.
    In more formal contexts, postpone is more likely to be used. So in an announcement it might be used, while put off would be fine if a teacher is talking to the class.

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