From the second edition (1989):
get, v.
(gɛt) Pa. tense got (arch. gat). Pa. pple. got (gotten). Pres. pple. getting. Forms: inf. 3–4 geten, (5 getyn), 3–6 gete, (4 geit, geyt, gite, Sc. gat(e, 4–5 gyte, 6 Sc. gait), 3–7 gett, (4–6 gette, 4 gitte, 5 gytt, 9 dial. git), 3– get. pa. tense 3–7 gate, (3 gait, 4 get, pl. gaten, geton, -yn, geetun, getton, 5 geten), 3–6 gatt, (4–6 gatte), 3– gat, 6– got, (6 got(t)e). pa. pple. α. 3–5 geten, (3 ȝeten, getun, 4 getin, geteyn, giten, -in, gyten, -in, 4–6 getyn, 5 geton), 3–5 getten, (4–5 gettyn, 5 getton, 6 gitten), 4–6 gete, (4 i-gete, 5 y-gete, gyte), 4–6 gette, (5 y-gette), 5–6 gett, (5 get). β. 3–4 gotin, 3– 6 goten, (4 gotyn, gote, 5 y-goten, goton, gothen), 4–6 Sc. gottin, -yn, 5–7 gotton, 6– gotten, got, (6 y-got). [a. ON. geta (gat, gátum, getenn) to get, obtain, to beget, also, to guess (Sw. gitta, Da. gide to be able or willing, MSw. gäta, Da. gjette to guess) = OE. -ietan (only in the compounds a-, be-, for-, ofer-, on-, under-ietan: see beget, forget), OFris. (ur-, for-)jeta, OS. (bi-, far-)getan (MDu. ver-gheten, Du. ver-geten), OHG. gez̧z̧an, kez̧z̧an (once in pple. kez̧z̧endi, ‘adeptus’, otherwise only in bi-, int-, ir-, fer-gez̧z̧an; MHG. er-, ver-gez̧z̧en, mod.G. ver-gessen), Goth. (bi-)gitan:—OTeut. *getan, gat-, gêtum, getono-. The OAr. root *ghed, *ghod ‘to seize’, ‘take hold of’, is found also in L. præda (:—*præ-hĕda) booty, prædium an estate, perh. also in hedera ivy (literally the ‘clinger’); and with inserted nasal in L. prehendere to catch, lay hold of, Gr. χανδάνειν (aor. ἔχαδον) to hold, contain, to be able.
Of the compounds of -ietan which existed in OE. (see above), only beietan and forietan survive in the modern language, and the normal equivalents beyet and foryet were displaced in later ME. in favour of beget and forget. Gower is app. the last author who employs beȝet; forȝet disappears in the 15th c. except in Sc., where it is not yet extinct. This change was prob. due to the influence of the simple verb. Conversely, the solitary example in ME. of ȝeten without prefix (sense 26) may be referred to the influence of biȝeten.


The forms of the pa. pple. retaining the original vowel (ON. getenn) are found in literature down to the 16th c., and in the north midlands and Yorkshire getten is still the dialectal form. From the beginning of the English history of the vb., however, it has, like most verbs with ME. open e in the present stem, tended to assume the conjugation of vbs. of the e, a, o series (originally confined to roots ending in a liquid); thus in the 13th c. we find geten, gat, goten parallel with stelen, stal, stolen. In the 16th c. the pa. tense was often got, by assimilation to the pa. pple.; in the 17th c. this became the usual form, though gat is used in the Bible of 1611 and still occurs in archaistic poetry. In England the form gotten of the pa. pple. is almost obsolete (exc. dial.) being superseded by got; in U.S. literature gotten is still very common, although Webster 1864 gave it as ‘obsolescent’.]


I. trans. To obtain, procure.


1. a. To obtain possession of (property, etc.) as the result of effort or contrivance.

c1200 Ormin 10219 Forr whase itt iss þatt grediȝ iss To winnenn erþlic ahhte, Aȝȝ alls he mare & mare gett Aȝȝ lisste himm affterr mare. c1330 R. Brunne Chron. (1810) 276 Þider ȝe alle salle ride, a faire prey salle ȝe gete. c1400 Mandeville (Roxb.) xxxiii. 150 On þis wyse þai get grete plentee of þis gold. 1489 Caxton Faytes of A. iii. xxi. 218 Noo good euyl goten can not be longe‥kept of hym that geteth hit. 1508 Fisher 7 Penit. Ps. li. Wks. (1876) 133 He caused the ryghtwyse man Naboth to be slayne and by gyle gate his vyneyarde. 1639 T. Brugis tr. Camus' Mor. Relat. 252 After so many difficulties of getting, what he so greatly desired, hee enjoyed it‥surpassing expression. 1678 Wanley Wond. Lit. World v. ii. §61. 471/2 Andronicus Comnenus by ambitious practices and pretence of reformation, got the Empire. 1737 Pope Hor. Epist. i. i. 79 Get Money, Money still! And then let Virtue follow if she will. 1858 G. Macdonald Phantastes i. (1878) 5 Perhaps I was to find only the records of lands and moneys, how gotten and how secured. 1870 Emerson Soc. & Solit., Dom. Life Wks. (Bohn) III. 47 Men are not born rich; and in getting wealth the man is generally sacrificed.
Proverb. 1523 Ld. Berners Froiss. I. ccccxiii. 722 Sir‥he that nothyng aduentureth nothynge getteth.


b. With advs.: To acquire or obtain in a certain way, esp. in ppl. combinations, well-gotten, ill-gotten.

c1440 Jacob's Well (E.E.T.S.) 209 A ryche man wyth fals gotyn good seyde to a preest þat he wolde ȝyue all þat he had falsely gett to pore folk. a1533 Ld. Berners Huon lxviii. 235 Al that rychys was not wel goten. 1622 R. Hawkins Voy. S. Sea (1847) 163 If one happen upon a bag of gold, silver, pearle, or precious stones, it is held well gotten, provided it be cleanly stolne. 1871 Freeman Norm. Conq. (1876) IV. xvii. 79 We are assured that it was all honourably gotten and was designed to be honourably spent.
Proverb. 1546 J. Heywood Prov. (1867) 62 Soone gotten, soone spent, yll gotten yll spent. 1548 in Strype Eccl. Mem. (1721) II. App. Q. 51 Evil gotten, worse spent. 1591 Horsey Trav. (Hakl. Soc.) 206 Eyll gotton soen lost.


c. absol. To acquire wealth or property.

1573 J. Sandford Hours Recreat. (1576) 129 They are suspected to tende rather to get than to give. 1635 Quarles Embl. iv. Epig. xii. 231 Wisdome not onely gets, but got, retaines. 1677 Evelyn Diary 10 Sept., Whilst he was Secretary of State‥he had gotten vastly, but spent it as hastily. 1864 Burton Scot Abr. I. iv. 213 The Church‥ever getting and never giving up, was eating away the territorial wealth of the temporal barons.


d. with epexegetic phrase, to get into one's hand, to get into one's possession.

1548 Hall Chron., Hen. VI, 161 He‥determined to get into his possession, the duchie of Acquitayne. 1571 Satir. Poems Reform. xxvii. 60 The Newhawin thay gatt into þair hand.


e. I wish you may get it, don't you wish you may get it?: ironical colloq. expressions implying the speaker's doubt of, or lack of desire for, another's success.

1836 Dickens Sk. Boz I. 42 An ‘I wish you may get it’ sort of expression in his eye. 1837 —— Pickw. xxvi. 274 ‘But the plaintiff must get it,’ resumed Mrs. Cluppins.‥ ‘Vell,’ said Sam.‥ ‘All I can say is, that I wish you may get it.’ 1842 Barham Ingol. Leg. 2nd Ser. 245 Ah, ha! my good friend!—don't you wish you may get it? 1848 Thackeray Van. Fair xiii, ‘There's one of the greatest men in the kingdom wants some.’ ‘Does he?’ growled the senior. ‘Wish he may get it.’ 1851 Mayhew Lond. Labour I. i. 56 I've heard people say when I've cried ‘all a-growing’ on a fine-ish day, ‘Aye, now summer's a-coming.’ I wish you may get it, says I to myself; for I've studied the seasons. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown i. ix, Don't you wish you may get it?


2. a. To obtain as the proceeds of one's business or employment; to earn.

c1300 Havelok 792 Ich am wel waxen, and wel may eten More than euere Grim may geten. 1362 Langl. P. Pl. A. vii. 238 He that get his fode her with trauaylinge in treuthe, God ȝiueth him his blessyng that his lyflode so swynketh. a1533 Ld. Berners Huon liii. 177 Thy mayster hath nothynge but that he geteth with his vyal. 1600 Shakes. A.Y.L. iii. ii. 78, I earne that I eate: get that I weare. 1701 De Foe True-born Eng. 27 And what they get by Day, they spend by Night. 1779–81 Johnson L.P., Pope Wks. IV. 46 If the money with which he retired was all gotten by himself.
absol. 1540 R. Hyrde tr. Vives' Instr. Chr. Wom. (1592) Tviij, They compell their husbandes unto shamefull crafts to get by. 1806 Wordsw. Sonn., ‘The world is too much’, Late and soon Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers.


b. in phr. to get a living or livelihood.

c1420 Chron. Vilod. 4377 [He]‥leuede‥In gode prosperite & in gode hele & wt his trauell his lyf-lode kat. 1530 Act 22 Hen. VIII, c. 12 If any man‥be vagrant, and can gyue no rekenynge howe he doth lefullye get his lyuynge. 1634 Peacham Gentl. Exerc. 3 The Emperour Constantine got his living a long time by painting. 1711 Addison Spect. No. 94 ⁋8 He set himself to think on proper Methods for getting a Livelihood in this strange Country. 1893 Law Times XCV. 4/2 There was no allegation against the mother's conduct or her means of getting a livelihood.


3. a. To obtain (much, little, nothing, etc.) by way of profit; to be benefited or advantaged to the extent of; to gain.

1490 Caxton Eneydos liii. 148 We that dyde fyghte ayenst the Troyens‥Gatte nor wanne therby nothynge. 1568 Grafton Chron. II. 356 When he had made the best agreement with them that he could, he gate but little by them. 1599 Shakes. Much Ado i. i. 65 They never meet, but there's a skirmish of wit between them. Beat. Alas, he gets nothing by that. 1677 Miege Dict. Eng.-Fr., I got nothing by it, je n'y ai rien gagné. 1841 Gen. P. Thompson Exerc. (1842) VI. 244 Is it that I have ever gotten anything by taking the manufacturers' side?


b. absol. To derive profit; to gain, be a gainer, esp. by a thing. Obs.

1591 Shakes. 1 Hen. VI, iv. iii. 32 We mourne, France smiles; We loose, they dayly get. 1679 Penn Addr. Prot. ii. 156 Doing as ill Gamesters are wont to do, get by using false Dice. a1687 Waller Poem, Night-piece 22 Like jewels to advantage set, Her beauty by the shade does get. 1727 A. Hamilton New Acc. E. Ind. I. xxv. 315 Whether our East~india Company got or lost by that War, I know not. 1748 Richardson Clarissa (1768) V. 164 People who keep lodgings at public places expect to get by every one who comes into their purlieus. 1762 Goldsm. Cit. W. xiii, The guardians of the temple, as they got by the self delusion, were ready to believe him too.


c. Of a clock: To gain in time. Obs.

1761 Maskelyne in Phil. Trans. LII. 440 The clock got 4m 1s, upon mean time, in two days.


4. To capture, gain possession of (a fortress, etc.). Obs.

a1400–50 Alexander 1453 Þen‥Gais him furth to Gasa‥& sesis it be-lyue; And quen þis Gasa was geten he [etc.]. 1477 Sir J. Paston in P. Lett. No. 798 III. 192 The Frenshe Kynge hathe gothen many off the towns off the Duk of Burgoyne. 1548 Hall Chron., Hen. VI, 161b, Without spedy aide‥the whole countrey were like to be gotten from his possession. 1598 R. Grenewey Tacitus' Ann. xiv. viii. 208 Neuerthelesse the Kings fortresse‥was not gotten but by fight. 1676 Hobbes Iliad i. 159 And when the city Troy we shall have got.


5. a. To gain, win (a victory). Now rare. Also †to get a battle, get the day, get the field, get the gree.

c1300 Cursor M. (Cott. Galba) 25367 He þat victori may gete Sall be corond [with] wirschippes grete. 1377 Langl. P. Pl. B. xviii. 98 The gree ȝit hath he geten for al his grete wounde. 1520 Caxton's Chron. Eng. i. 7/1 Ye chyldren of Israel gate ye victory agaynst Jabyn. 1579 Gosson Sch. Abuse (Arb.) 47 Tydinges was broughte him that his Souldiers gotte the day. 1659 B. Harris Parival's Iron Age 266 Had Charles gotten the Battel, it is very probable, that England had been the price of the victory. 1705 W. Bosman Guinea 40 Their small Force behaved themselves so well, that they had certainly got the Day if [etc.]. 1737 L. Clarke Hist. Bible (1740) I. ix. 580 For Lathyrus having gotten the Victory, pursued it to the utmost.


b. To obtain (a position of superiority or advantage over another person); in phrases to get the upper (†over, †better) hand (of); to get the start, the advantage, etc. (of); to get the sun, the wind, of; to get the better of (formerly also simply †to get the better); †to get a good hand against. to get anything (or something) on (a person), to gain or possess incriminating information about (someone); to have an advantage over; cf. on prep. 21b, d.; (colloq., orig. U.S.).

a1300 Cursor M. 2508 Þai lete þairs was þe land Fra þai had geten þe ouer-hand. 1530 Palsgr. 563/2, I get the upper hande of one, I overcome hym, je vaincs. 1548 Hall Chron., Edw. IV, 218 Thei had fought from mornyng almoste to noone, without any part gettyng avauntage of other. 1563 Homilies ii. Resurrection (1859) 434 He [Christ] hath‥over~come the devil, death, and hell, and hath victoriously gotten the better hand of them all. 1568 Tilney Disc. Mariage Dvb, By conquest getting ye upper hande. 1588 Shakes. L.L.L. iv. iii. 369 Be first aduis'd In conflict that you get the sunne of them. 1600 Holland Livy vii. vii. 253 The other armie‥got a good hand against their enemies. 1601 Shakes. Jul. C. i. ii. 130 It doth amaze me A man of such a feeble temper should So get the start of the Maiesticke world. Ibid. ii. i. 326, I will strive with things impossible, Yea get the better of them. 1613 Purchas Pilgrimage (1614) 400 These reeds would fight together, and the victorie should remaine with him whose reede got the better. 1653 H. Cogan tr. Pinto's Trav. xix. 68 Like an old Soldier as he was, and verst in the trade of Pyrat, he got the wind of us. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. viii. 221 They at last got so far the better of their aversion, as to be persuaded to taste it. 1872 Freeman Gen. Sketch xxi. §19 (1874) 230 Casimir the Fourth finally got the better of the Teutonic Knights. 1885 F. Anstey Tinted Venus 157 Supposing the police don't nip in and get the start of her. 1919 Detective Story Mag. 25 Nov. 129 He gave me the slip.‥ Maybe it's just as well since I haven't got anything on him yet. 1923 L. J. Vance Baroque vii. 42 You haven't got any thing on me. 1946 T. Jones Skinny Angel 85 Those fellows are trying to get something on someone. 1960 ‘W. Haggard’ Closed Circuit iii. 31 Get something on the men who counted. Then you could do almost as you pleased. It was astonishing how most of the men who counted had something to hide.


c. (Cf. gain v. 8.) to get ground: to make progress, advance. So also to get head (cf. head n. 52). to get ground of: to encroach upon, obtain the mastery of; to draw away from (pursuers).

1529 S. Fish Supplic. Beggers (E.E.T.S.) 4 The Turke‥shulde neuer be abill to get so moche grounde of cristendome. 1597 Shakes. 2 Hen. IV, ii. iii. 53 If they get ground, and vantage of the King, Then ioyne you with them. c1611 Chapman Iliad xxiii. 399 This, the horse fear'd, and more powre Put to their knees, straite getting ground. 1640 tr. Verdere's Rom. Rom. i. 127 Being better mounted then they, he quickly got a great deal of ground of them. 1662 R. Mathew Unl. Alch. §31. 26 If one Fever have got head before this Pill be taken. 1680 H. More Apocal. Apoc. 209 The ancient zeal‥will be much relaxated, and wickedness will get head again. 1700 T. Brown tr. Fresny's Amusem. Ser. & Com. 92 A Feaver‥that press'd hard upon a Sick Man, and every Minute got Ground of him. 1737 Whiston Josephus, Antiq. Dissert. iii. v, The rest of their institutions‥got ground by their pravity.


d. absol. to get of: to gain advantage over; also, to outstrip in speed; to gain upon in pursuing.

1525 Ld. Berners Froiss. II. xxi. 43 Euery day they ymagined by what subteltie they coulde gette one of another by dedes of armes. 1548 Hall Chron., Edw. IV, 209 The kynges shyp was good with sayle, and so much gat of the Easterlinges, that she came on the coast of Holland. 1599 Hakluyt Voy. II. i. 246 Notwithstanding, they get of the Persians, and make castles and holds in their countrey. 1628 Digby Voy. Medit. (1868) 37 It was her boate which I tooke vp, that they had cutt of because my sattia got so mainely of her.


e. Racing. To hold out for, to stay (a specified distance).

1898 A. E. T. Watson Turf vii. 148 There are not a few horses that cannot fairly ‘get’ even five furlongs. 1898 Daily News 17 Oct. 3/3 He will‥be opposed by plenty of candidates who can get the Cambridgeshire course. 1907 Daily Chron. 14 Nov. 3/3 Only a wonder of a horse can ‘get’ those four miles and a half of ditches and fences.


6. a. To earn, win, acquire (fame, credit, glory, renown, love, favour, etc.).

a1300 Cursor M. 2546 Mikel it was þat luffeword þan Þat abram gat o mani man. 1362 Langl. P. Pl. A. x. 206 Fynd-lynges and lyȝers, Vn-gracios to gete loue or eni good elles. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Mathou 415 He fawndyt myn wil for to gate. 1485 Caxton Paris & V. (1868) 3 Bothe‥wente euer to-gyder there as they knewe ony Ioustyng‥for to gete honour. 1500–20 Dunbar Poems lxxxii. 70 That ȝe may gett ane bettir name. 1568 Grafton Chron. II. 40 He gat himselfe thereby small or little favour. 1596 Shakes. Tam. Shr. ii. i. 120 If I get your daughter's loue, What dowrie shall I haue. 1639 T. Brugis tr. Camus' Mor. Relat. 188 No more approach her‥much lesse get the good will of her friends. 1680 Otway Orphan i. i. 71 To send them forth where Glory's to be gotten. 1693 Humours of Town 36 By large Quotations‥borrowed from Burton's Melancholy‥get the Reputation of profound Scholars.


b. In various games: to make (a certain score); to score (so many points, runs, goals, etc.); in Cards, to take (so many tricks). Also, in Cricket, to take (a wicket), to take the wicket of.

1548, 1553 [see goal n. 3a]. 1710 [see odd a. 1]. 1731 in H. T. Waghorn Cricket Scores (1899) 4 The Duke's hands came in first, and got 79 before they were out. 1778 Miss Wicket & Miss Trigger (caption of print), Miss Trigger you see is an excellent Shot, And forty five Notches Miss Wicket's just got. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. viii. 387 We haven't got the best wicket yet. Ibid. 397 Only seventeen runs to get with four wickets—the game is all but ours! 1901 Encycl. Sport I. 231/2 Many a bad ball gets a wicket. 1912 A. A. Lilley Twenty-four Years Cricket (1914) x. 164 The substantial support Trumper received‥left us 194 to get to win. 1930 C. V. Grimmett (title) Getting wickets. 1971 Sunday Express 31 Oct. 31/3 He could not get the goal he sought so eagerly.


7. a. To acquire (knowledge, etc.) by study or experience.

1388 Wyclif Prov. iv. 7 In al thi possessioun gete thou [1382 purchace] prudence. c1400 Cato's Mor. 209 in Cursor M. App. 1672 Þe man þat is harde witte gode clergis mai gitte, wiþ-in lite ȝeres. 1535 Fisher Wks. (1876) 388 Much comfortable knowledge and sweetnesse this Prophette gate by this booke. 1577 Harrison England Pref. (1877) i. p. cx, I gat some knowledge of things by letters and pamphlets. 1651 Hobbes Leviath. i. v. 21 Reason is not‥gotten by Experience onely. 1732 Berkeley Alciphr. vii. § 11 Some old ideas may be lost, and some new ones got. 1864 Swinburne Atalanta 297 In such wise I gat knowledge of the Gods. 1868 C. Clarke Relig. & Duty 255 That knowledge which is gotten at school.


b. to get knowledge (intelligence, †wit, etc.) of: to learn of, receive information of. For to get wind of, see 15b.

a1557 Diurn. Occurr. (Bannatyne Club) 45 The governour gettand witt therof, past with his cumpany and saigit the samyn. 1639 S. Du Verger tr. Camus' Admir. Events 128 His wife had already gotten some small knowledge of this matter. 1761 Hume Hist. Eng. II. xlii. 461 The duke of Parma, who had gotten intelligence of their approach. 1762 Kames Elem. Crit. xix. (1833) 349 King Richard having got intelligence [etc.].


c. To learn, ascertain. rare.

1638 F. Junius Paint. Ancients 122 He findeth that the unlearned and carelesse multitude hath got his name. 1737 L. Clarke Hist. Bible (1740) I. i. 51 Abraham having got the price, never offers to beat it down.


d. To understand (a person or statement). Also absol. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

[1892 ‘Mark Twain’ Amer. Claimant xiii. 101, I don't know that I quite get the bearings of your position.] 1907 M. C. Harris Tents of Wickedness i. iii. 33 ‘I don't get her,’ she murmured, as if Leonora was a telephone number. 1913 J. London Valley of Moon i. vii, When I go after anything I get it, an' if anything gets in between it gets hurt. D'ye get that? 1918 Wodehouse Piccadilly Jim xi. 114, I get you not, friend. Supply a few footnotes. 1937 ‘J. Bell’ Murder in Hospital vii. 136 ‘I'd go about it rather quietly if I were you.‥’ ‘I get you,’ said Thornton. 1948 —— Wonderful Mrs. Marriott xxi. 273 Oh, I get. The Condover Court lady. 1956 I. Bromige Enchanted Garden II. ii. 93 Fiona broke into peals of laughter and became quite helpless for a few moments. ‘Don't get it,’ said Julian. 1966 ‘M. Innes’ Change of Heir ii. 14 Okay, okay. I get. Norval. My name is Norval.


e. To notice, look at (a person, esp. one who is conceited or laughable); usu. as imp. with a pronoun as object. colloq.

1958 News Chron. 22 May 4/4 If he is conceited the girls mutter get yew! 1967 H. Dalmas Fowler Formula (1968) i. 16 It was almost like hearing himself say, ‘Get me! I had a special invitation to the Universal party this afternoon.’


8. To learn (a lesson, †a language, etc.), commit to memory; esp. to get by heart (see heart n. 32); to get by rote (see rote n.); †to get without book.

1582 N. Lichefield tr. Castanheda's Conq. E. Ind. xxxi. 77 One of those‥after that hee had gotten the Arabian language, went by lande. 1597 Morley Introd. Mus. 3 You must get it perfectly without booke, to saie it forwards and backwards. 1612 Brinsley Pos. Parts (1669) 38 Which do you account the speediest way of all to get and keep these verbs. 1666 J. Davies Hist. Caribby Isl. 185 And he had such an excellent memory, that he had got their Language in perfection. 1692 Burnet Past. Care ix. 115 A whole Discourse is got by heart. 1749 Chesterfield Lett. (1792) II. 251 Those principles, which you then got, like your grammar rules, only by rote. 1761 Churchill Rosciad 248 Without the least finesse of art He gets applause!—I wish he'd get his part. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 123, I had got almost all Watts' hymns by heart. 1891 Longm. Mag. Oct. 647 What she said was never very profound, unless she had got it by heart.


9. To find out, ascertain by calculation or experiment; to obtain as a result of arithmetical or other processes.

1559 W. Cuningham Cosmogr. Glasse 97 It is not so easie‥to trie th' eleuation of the Pole: but it is as harde, and laborus, to get the Longitude. 1887 ‘L. Carroll’ Game of Logic i. §2. 28 By taking x as subject, we get ‘all x are ’. 1888 Times 2 Oct. 3/2 A trial sand-loaded projectile was first fired in order to get the range. 1891 Chamb. Jrnl. 20 June 400/1 Dividing this by three hundred and sixty we get 364,609·13 feet as the length of a mean degree.


10. a. Without reference to agency on the part of the subject: To become possessed of; to receive, e.g. as one's share in a division, as a gift, wages, or as a payment of any kind.

c1250 Gen. & Ex. 1497 ‘Broðer,’ quad he, ‘sel me ðo wunes, ðe queðen ben ðe firme sunes, ðat ic ðin firme birðehe gete. c1300 Havelok 908 Wel is set þe mete þu etes And þe hire þat þu getes. c1320 Sir Tristr. 545 Wheþer hem leuer ware Win or ale to gete. c1330 R. Brunne Chron. (1810) 159 Loke ȝe be me nehi, fulle gode giftes gete [so MS.; printed ȝete] ȝe. 1500–20 Dunbar Poems lxi. 46 Quhen uther horss had bran to byt I gat bot griss. 1567 Satir. Poems Reform. vii. 192 Donald the fyft, he gat the same reuaird. 1593 Shakes. 2 Hen. VI, iv. x. 29 Thou wilt betray me, and get a 1000 Crownes of the King. 1636 Finch Law ii. xvii. 177 If‥within the yeare it [a stray] strayeth againe, and another Lord getteth it, the first Lord cannot take it againe. a1639 W. Whately Prototypes i. xix. (1640) 189 Julius, by being courteous to Paul‥gate his life and the life of his soldiers for a reward. 1834 H. Miller Scenes & Leg. xv. (1857) 230 Pictures of little boys and girls, which, in every case, the little boys and girls got to themselves. 1844 Lady G. C. Fullerton Ellen Middleton (1854) II. x. 26 She told me she had got a note from Henry. 1890 Blackw. Mag. CXLVIII. 717/2 They get from 10s. to 12s. a-week for their eggs alone. 1892 Chamb. Jrnl. 1 Oct. 625/2 As to salaries, an officer‥usually gets sixty pounds.


b. To obtain (a name). Also to get the name of: to have the reputation of (being so-and-so).

1662 J. Davies Mandelslo's Trav. 89 Cuncam, for so it is more commonly called, though from its Metropolis it somtimes gets the name of Visiapour. 1741 Monro Anat. Bones (ed. 3) 17 The first [Vertebra], from its Use of supporting the globular Head, has got the Name of Atlas. 1832 Austin Jurispr. (1879) II. xxxii. 592 Laws which have gotten the specious name of natural.


11. a. To obtain by way of concession or favour, or by means of pressure, insistence, or entreaty; e.g. to get mercy, get forgiveness, get grace, get leave, get permission; to get an answer, get information, etc. Const. from, of, out of.

a1300 Cursor M. 460 (Cott.) O me seruis sal he non gette. a1300 Ibid. 484 (Gött.) Merci getis he neuer mare. a1300 Ibid. 19605 (Cott.) O prince o preistes, gatt he leue. c1350 Will. Palerne 1592 Þe gracious graunt þei gaten of here herande. 1362 Langl. P. Pl. A. vi. 126 Thou maiȝt gete grace ther, so that thou go bi-tyme. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Bertholomeus 24 Of þare god gat þai nan answere. c1386 Chaucer Manciple's Prol. 102 Of that mateere ye gete namoore of me. c1450 St. Cuthbert (Surtees) 5042 He gettes here forgifnes. c1470 Henry Wallace i. 116 He gat ymage [= homage] of Scotland swne. 1480 Caxton Descr. Brit. 31 And prayde to haue a place to duelle inne and myght none gete. 1535 J. ap Rice in Four C. Eng. Lett. 33 As touching the convent, we coulde geate litle or no reportes. 1568 Grafton Chron. II. 209 Who with muche adoe gate leave to depart from his brother the Erle. 1602 Shakes. Ham. iv. iii. 13 Where the dead body is bestow'd‥We cannot get from him. 1612 T. Taylor Comm. Titus iii. 2 Is there no iustice to be gotten at the Magistrats hand? 1651 in Fuller's Abel Rediv., Pareus 578 At last through Gods mercy, by importunity he gat his fathers consent. 1709 Steele Tatler No. 194 ⁋3, I knocked and called, but could get no Answer. 1738 Lucca's Mem. 17 Examining the Woman first, to get what we could from her. 1804 W. Tennant Ind. Recreat. (ed. 2) I. 280 To‥get permission to enter into [his] service. 1814 D. H. O'Brien Captiv. & Escape 119 Asked if I could have a bed? I could get no answer. 1839 36 Yrs. Seafaring Life 263 A Frenchman never gets a word of French from me‥till I see it serves my purpose.


b. with clause as object. Obs. rare.

1483 Caxton Gold. Leg. 223b/1 Seynt James‥gate that he shold be restored to his lyf. 1556 Aurelio & Isab. (1608) Miv, At that tyme was it easey inoughe to gette that the deathe was not geven unto Isabell.


12. a. To obtain, come to have, attain (some immaterial thing desired or aimed at); e.g. to get rest, get sleep, get comfort; to get one's sight, health, liberty, etc.; also to get one's end, get one's will, get one's own way, etc.

a1300 Cursor M. 12259 (Cott.) A commament nu mak i here‥Þat þe poueral get sum bote. a1300 Ibid. 13553 (Gött.) He went and weisse his eien þare, And gat [Cott. tok] his sight. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Bertholomeus 108 Parfyte hele þe madyne gate. Ibid., Mathou 412 [He] cessis nocht to threte ws al bot gyf his wil he gate. c1470 Henry Wallace iv. 47 Thow gettis no mendis. 1530 Palsgr. 563/1, I trust in God I shall get my desyre of hym. a1547 Latimer in Strype Eccl. Mem. (1733) I. ii. 262 What rest hath he gotten, that is removed from the Stocks in Newgate to the Rack in the Tower? ?a1550 Freiris Berwik 589 in Dunbar's Poems (1893) 304 Alesone on na wayiss gat hir will. 1581 Sidney Astr. & Stella xlv, Pitie‥gate in her breast such place, That [etc.]. 1618 Raleigh in Four C. Eng. Lett. 38 When I had gotten my libertye. 1671 Lady M. Bertie in 12th Rep. Hist. MSS. Comm. App. v. 22 It was so hard to get room that wee were forced to goe by four a clocke. 1674 S. Vincent Yng. Gallant's Acad. Ep. Ded. Aijb, The other laughs at us when he hath got his ends. 1693 Humours of Town 2, I could scarce get one sound nap. 1734 tr. Rollin's Anc. Hist. (1827) I. 113 In what manner this passion‥got such a footing upon our stage. 1792 Gentl. Mag. Jan. 12/1, I got a very comfortable nap between London and St. Albans. 1860 Trench Synon. N.T. Ser. i. (ed. 5) 75 Any benefit which he could have gotten from his books. 1885 Manch. Exam. 8 June 4/7 If they do not get their own way they will resign.


b. Frequently with noun of action as obj.: To succeed in doing, obtain opportunity to do, what the n. implies. Also in phrases to get (a) sight (a glance, glimpse, peep, etc.) of, to get (a) hold of (†on, †upon), to get possession of, etc.

a1300 Cursor M. 22570 Vp to þe lift rise sal þe see, Þar wit strenght to get entre. 1375 Barbour Bruce xix. 785 The discurrouris‥Of athir host has gottin sicht. 1535 Coverdale Ps. cxiv. [cxvi.] 3 The paynes of hell gat holde vpon me. 1568 Tilney Disc. Mariage Civb, See I pray you‥how soone this Ladie, hath gotten holde of that sentence. 1613 Purchas Pilgrimage (1614) 32 Like men drowning, that get hold on euery twig. 1615 J. Stephens Satyr. Ess. 240 You get acquaintance with him by a bare salutation. 1699 W. Dampier Voy. II. ii. 34 And though we followed the Blood a good way, yet did not come up with him‥to get a second shot. 1700 T. Brown tr. Fresny's Amusem. Ser. & Com. 55 We made hard shift to get now and then a Glance at some of them. a1703 Burkitt On N.T. Luke iv. 37 Where Satan has once gotten a hold‥how unwilling he is to be cast out of possession. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. viii. 222 We were‥in hopes of getting sight of the Gloucester. 1761–2 Hume Hist. Eng. (1806) V. lxvii. 64 Their enemies they thought‥had gotten possession of their sovereign's confidence. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 202 To the west we got a peep‥of Swansea Bay. c1860 H. Stuart Seaman's Catech. 47 As soon as the buntlines are bent get a pull of them. 1889 Times (weekly ed.) 13 Dec. 14/1 Every effort was made‥to get speech of the Emperor.


c. to get a stomach: to procure an appetite. (Also said of the means employed.)

[1682: see 18b. 1684 tr. Bonet's Merc. Compit. i. 16 Peaches eaten before Meals get a stomach, if it be lost through a hot cause.] 1688 C. Hoole School-Colloq. 29 So also we shall get a stomach to our meat. 1725 Watts Logic i. iv. §6 When we say‥to get a stomach, and to get a cold, etc.


d. to get religion (orig. U.S.): to be converted.

1772 in D.A. 1802 Methodist New Connexion Mag. Nov. 432 A number, too, are wrought upon in the usual way, and hopefully get religion without any of these extraordinary appearances. 1857 C. W. Elliott New Engl. Hist. I. 460 Capt. Underhill killed his neighbor's wife, and ‘got his religion on a pipe of tobacco’. a1882 J. P. Quincy Figures of Past (1883) 6 We had come to Andover to get religion. 1952 Manch. Guardian Weekly 9 Oct. 7 It is sad news for his publishers that he has got religion.


13. a. To acquire, to come to have (a quality, power, custom, etc.).

c1600 Shakes. Sonn. lxxviii, Euery Alien pen hath got my vse. 1611 —— Cymb. iv. ii. 236 Let vs‥though now our voyces Haue got the mannish crack, sing [etc.]. 1626 Bacon Sylva §352 After two Nights‥it [a root] got a Shining. 1629 R. Hill Pathw. Piety (1849) I. 182 They have gotten a custom of sinning. 1640 Fuller Joseph's Coat Comm. 1 Cor. xi. 25 (1867) 62 Wine was then subject to spilling; it hath not since gotten a more liquid or diffusive quality. 1676 Shadwell Libertine ii, It's nothing but a way of speaking, which young amorous fellows have gotten. 1736 Butler Anal. i. v. Wks. 1874 I. 91 By accustoming ourselves to any course of action, we get an aptness to go on.


b. To come to have (a notion, impression, etc.). Also to get into one's head; often to get (it) into one's head that, etc.

1677 Wycherley Plain Dealer iv. ii, Jer. How? what quirk has she got in her head now? 1762 Goldsm. Cit. W. lxxviii. ⁋2 The people, it seems, have got into their heads that they have more wit than others. 1876 Geo. Eliot Dan. Der. i. vii, Anna had got it into her head that you would want to ride after the hounds this morning. a1898 Mod. colloq., Don't let him get the idea that you care nothing about it. If he gets it into his head that he is a genius, he will be intolerable.


14. a. To catch, contract (an illness).

1610 Shakes. Temp. ii. ii. 68 This is some Monster‥who hath got (as I take it) an Ague. 1710 Steele Tatler No. 234 ⁋15 To you I apply my self for Redress, having gotten‥a Cold on Sunday was Sevennight. 1765 Sterne Tr. Shandy VIII. vi, Art thou not tormented with the vile asthma that thou gattest in skating against the wind in Flanders? 1805 Med. Jrnl. XIV. 363 When a person‥gets a catarrh [etc.]. 1892 Black & White 13 Aug. 182/1 Horses get glanders and men get cholera.


b. colloq. to get (a person or thing) on the brain, get on one's nerves: to be crazy about, or morbidly affected by the thought of.


c. to have got 'em (bad): to have the D.T.'s, to have ‘the horrors’; also in milder sense, to have a fit of nerves. slang.

1893 Farmer & Henley Slang III. 188/1 A very sick person, especially a patient in the horrors, is said to have got 'em bad. 1936 P. M. Clark Autobiogr. Old Drifter xiii. 184 Another fellow who ‘got 'em’ was ‘Taffy’. He got 'em so badly one night that he ran from the Old Drift, clad only in his nightshirt.


d. to have got it bad(ly): to have fallen love; to be infatuated. slang.

1911 G. B. Shaw Getting Married in Doctor's Dilemma, etc. 263 You seem to have got it pretty bad. 1921 W. J. Locke Mountebank xiii. 163 ‘She's got it rather badly,’ Charles murmured to me. 1941 Webster & Ellington (song-title) I got it bad and that ain't good. 1969 D. Clark Nobody's Perfect v. 148 Take it from me he's got it badly. He couldn't even hear me mention your name without wanting to talk about you.


15. a. to get wind, †get air (cf. air n. 11), get vent: to get abroad, to become known to others.

1722 De Foe Plague (1884) 10 It had gotten vent. 1726 Adv. Capt. R. Boyle 166 But my Story getting Air, I was made the Scoff of every Body. 1776 Trial of Nundocomar 90/2 It got wind, and a great many people asked me: I told them. 1828 Life Planter Jamaica 340 That it may get vent is not improbable, for these black fellows are as inquisitive [etc.]. 1884 C. L. Pirkis Judith Wynne III. xi. 126 It's getting wind in the neighbourhood that the child is lost.


b. Hence (after 7b), to get wind of: to hear of, become acquainted with.

1840 Thackeray Paris Sk.-bk. (1867) 32 If my old aunt gets wind of it, she'll cut me off with a shilling. 1885 Century Mag. XXX. 380/2 If that sweet little Rose were to get wind of it, I believe she'd faint.


16. a. To receive, meet with, suffer (a fall, blow, defeat, etc.); †also (with omission of object) to be struck on a specified part of the body (constr. on, over, etc.). Phr. to get the worst of it (cf. 5b).

c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Peter 585 Sike ane fall þane he gat. c1475 Rauf Coilȝear 698 As he gat ben throw He gat mony greit schow [shove]. 1508 Dunbar's Flyting 48* Iuge‥quha gat the war. a1550 Christis Kirke Gr. xx, Thay gat upon the gammis. 1597 Montgomerie Cherrie & Slae 214, I gat sik chek Quhilk I micht nocht remuif nor nek. 1601 Shakes. All's Well iv. i. 41, I must giue my selfe some hurts, and say I got them in exploit. 1632 J. Hayward tr. Biondi's Eromena 91 Who‥had (without this succour) for all his valour gotten the worst of the day. 1697 Collier Ess. Mor. Subj. i. (1703) 80 Many persons‥in the crowd and tumult of the action, get nothing but blows for their pains. a1732 T. Boston Crook in Lot (1805) 163 Several of the saints have gotten on the finger ends by this means. 1738 Swift Pol. Conversat. 6, I hope you are up for all Day?—Yes, if I don't get a Fall before Night. 1809 Windham Let. 16 Sept. in Parl. Speeches (1812) I. 113 A slight hurt which I got here in riding. 1888 Rider Haggard Col. Quaritch III. i. 1 Cossey had only got the outside portion of the charge of No. 7.


b. To receive, suffer, by way of punishment.
In Sc. the obj. is often a pl. n. with poss. pron., as to get one's rages, to get a scolding (cf. quots. 1508, 1567, 1785).

1508 Dunbar Flyting w. Kennedie 70 Throw all Bretane it salbe blawin owt, How that thow‥gat thy paikis. 1567 Satir. Poems Reform. v. 38 It war weill wairit he gat his quhippis. 1654 Whitlock Zootomia 144 And thus they get Credit among some, for which at Schoole they should have got a whipping. 1785 Burns Ep. to W. Simson Postscr. 39 Monie a fallow gat his licks. 1790 —— Tam o' Shanter 201 Ah, Tam! ah, Tam! thou'll get they fairin! 1889 J. K. Jerome 3 Men in Boat 238 We did not want to overdo the thing and get six months.


c. to get it (colloq. or slang): to receive a punishment, scolding, or the like; to ‘catch it’. Also to get it hot; to get it in the neck: see neck n.1 1e.

1872 Figaro 22 June 389/1 The German Emperor, Bismarck, and Earl Granville also ‘got’ it, but not quite so hotly. 1898 Westm. Gaz. 14 Jan. 4/3 You will get it hot before you are done.


d. In various slang phrases: to get the sack (bag, boot, bounce, etc.): to be dismissed from a situation. to get the mitten: to be rejected as a suitor. to get the lead: to be shot. (For quots. see the ns.)


e. to get his (or theirs): to be killed. slang.

a1910 ‘O. Henry’ Rolling Stones (1913) iii. 65 Clifford Wainwright being shot by a squad of soldiers.‥ Oh, yes, it was rum that did it. He backslided and got his. 1913 Kipling Diversity of Creatures (1917) 288 He'd got his. I knew it by the way the head rolled in my hands. 1928 E. Wallace Flying Squad xiii. 110 He'll get his one of these days. 1938 F. D. Sharpe Sharpe of Flying Squad viii. 107 The other women leave her alone because they know that if they don't—they'll get theirs from Johnny. 1959 N. Mailer Advts. for Myself (1961) 66 He was going to get his, come two three four hours. That was all right, of course, you didn't live forever.


17. a. To procure or obtain (a required thing or person); to seek out and take, to cause to come or be supplied.

a1300 Cursor M. 26129 If he in suilk a nede be tan, Þat he ne get man bot curst an [etc.]. 13‥ Gaw. & Gr. Knt. 1625 Þe goude ladyez were geten, & gedered þe meyny. c1385 Chaucer L.G.W. 1123 Dido, Ther nas coursere‥That in the lond of Libie may be gete. c1400 Destr. Troy 13477 Two spies full spedely he sped hym to gete. 1465 Marg. Paston in P. Lett. No. 500 II. 179, I have gyte a replevyn. 1523 Fitzherb. Husb. §124 Gette thy quycke-settes in the woode-countreye. ?a1550 Freiris Berwik 247 in Dunbar's Poems (1893) 293 Scho stertis vp and gettis licht in hy. 1559–60 Act 2 Eliz. in Bolton Stat. Irel. (1621) 271 The bookes concerning the said services‥shall be attained and gotten before the said feast of St. John. 1585 T. Washington tr. Nicholay's Voy. i. xxii. 29 Moreover, we got a pilote being of the yle of Chio, in place of him that was dead. 1590 Shakes. Com. Err. ii. ii. 37 And you vse these blows long, I must get a sconce for my head. 1647–8 Sir C. Cotterell Davila's Hist. Fr. (1678) 23 Few people were to be gotten there abouts. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 197 So I went up to the Village, and got a Praw, which I sent to bring him over to me. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. xiv. 288 We could not have failed of getting whatever numbers [of sailors] we pleased. 1818 J. W. Croker in C. Papers (1884) I. iv. 113 At last I have gotten the warrant for searching for the old regalia of the Scottish Crown. 1849 Macaulay Hist. Eng. iii. I. 380 The coach sometimes reached the inn so late that it was impossible to get supper.


b. with immaterial object.

1814 D. H. O'Brien Captiv. & Escape 179 Dr. B. got a lift in a waggon for three or four miles. 1879 Lond. Soc. Christm. No. 61/1, I went into a little shop to get a shave. 1892 H. R. Mill Realm Nat. xi. 61 To get Greenwich time in remote places is more difficult.


c. To obtain in marriage. Obs. exc. as a contextual use of 17.

1390 Gower Conf. II. 242 She muste than algate faile To geten him, whan he were dede. 1611 Shakes. Cymb. ii. iii. 9 If I could get this foolish Imogen, I should haue Gold enough. 1738 Swift Pol. Conversat. 82, I wonder why such a handsome‥young Gentleman as you do not get some rich Widow.


d. To gain, bring over to one's side; to win (a woman). Obs.

c1385 Chaucer L.G.W. 1753 Lucretia, For wel, thoghte he, she sholde nat be geten. c1470 Henry Wallace iii. 31 It war the best for King Eduuardis awaill, Mycht he him get to be his steidfast man For gold or land‥Me think beforce he may nocht gottyn be. 1653 Holcroft Procopius, Vandal Wars ii. xiii. 46 Maximinus‥had gotten many of those mutiners with a design to usurp.


18. With dat. of the person for whom the specified object is obtained or procured. a. With dat. of refl. pronoun (†occas. with to or unto): To obtain, procure for oneself.

a1300 Cursor M. 4607 (Cott.) Do gett þe a god purueur þat in þis nede þe mai socur. c1340 Ibid. 21094 (Fairf.) Thomas‥preiched‥for to gite him heiuen to mede. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Cristofȯre 517 Gais & gettis ȝou lechis fele, ȝoure brokine godis fore to hele. c1385 Chaucer L.G.W. 2160 Ariadne, [He] gat him ther a newe barge anoon. a1400–50 Alexander 794 Kest hym on þis yong knyght to gett hym a name. 1548 Hall Chron., Edw. IV, 237b, You‥by your‥noble feates have gotten to you, in maner an immortall fame. 1597 Gerarde Herbal i. iv. §2 (1633) 6 This water grasse doth get vnto it selfe some new rootes. 1628 Hobbes Thucyd. (1629) 70 A man of Argilus‥got him a Seale like to the Seale of Pausanias. 1690 Evelyn Mem. (1857) III. 315, I have now gotten me a pair of new horses. 1797 H. More in Lady Chatterton Mem. Ld. Gambier (1861) I. 320 This young lady has got her a husband. 1842 Tennyson Locksley Hall 18 In the spring the wanton lapwing gets himself another crest.


b. To obtain or procure for others. Chiefly with simple dat. of personal pronoun, but also (in later writers) with to and for.

a1300 Cursor M. 3502 (Gött.) Ay was he bone, To gete [Cott. fete] his fadir venisun. a1300 Ibid. 7293 (Cott.) Gett vs a king. c1350 Will. Palerne 644 Melior‥preide hire priueli‥to gete hire þat gode gras as sone as sche miȝt. c1385 Chaucer L.G.W. 1649 Hypsip. & Medea, [She] gat him greet name as a conquerour. c1430 Syr Tryam. 454 A norse they gatt hyt [a child] untylle. a1550 Freiris Berwik 255 in Dunbar's Poems (1893) 294 Ga, gait me cheiss and breid. 1559 W. Cuningham Cosmogr. Glasse 1 This was it which gat him so many victories. 1596 Shakes. Tam. Shr. i. i. 123 Gre. What's that, I pray. Hor. Marrie sir to get a husband for her Sister. 1600 in Shaks. C. Praise 36 Promysyng to gete them xls. more then their ordynary to play yt. 1682 Shadwell Lanc. Witches 11, Coursing had gotten me a woundy stomach, and I eat like a Swine. 1690 Locke Hum. Und. i. ii. §15 They are lodg'd in the Memory, and Names got to them. 1890 Sir A. Kekewich in Law Times Rep. LXIII. 683/2 The landowner requires a carriage for his own use, and he asks the estate agent to get it for him.


19. a. To procure by hunting or fishing; to catch. Now somewhat rare.

a1300 Cursor M. 3522 Bath on fer and ner he soght, Bot þat dai wayth þan gatt he noght. c1300 Havelok 1393 He wore yare, Grimes sones, for to fare In-to þe se, fishes to gete. 13‥ Gaw. & Gr. Knt. 1171 Þe gre-houndeȝ so grete, þat geten hem [the deer] bylyue. c1450 St. Cuthbert (Surtees) 4345 Elfride men fared fysshe to gete. 1694 Acc. Sev. Late Voy. ii. (1711) 12 On the 9th we got another male whale, being the eighth. 18‥ Kingsley Poems, Sands of Dee 17 Was never salmon got [v.r. yet] that shone so fair.


b. To bring in, gather, secure (a crop).

1523 Fitzherb. Husb. §25 Shorte hey, and leye hey is good for shepe, and all maner of catell if it be well got. 1657 Austen Fruit Trees i. 5 From the time that fruits come to be worth getting, till they be ripe. 1773 Phil. Trans. LXIII. 222 The crop of wheat where it was well gotten was tolerable good. 1858 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. XIX. i. 230 Hay secured before the 27th of June was got without a drop of rain. 1891 Blackw. Mag. CXLIX. 817/1, I remember well the fustiness of that haystack (it must have been ‘got’ after oceans of rain).


c. To obtain (coal, ore, etc.) by mining.

1664 Power Exp. Philos. 172 The Roof and Seat is the Top and Bottom of the Works, wherein they get Coles. 1671 J. Webster Metallogr. i. 18 The Pits or Shafts where Ores are usually gotten. 1841 Collieries & Coal Trade (ed. 2) 244 In proceeding to get the coal, the collier, whenever he can do so, works upon the face of the bed. 1885 Law Times LXXIX. 119/2 The ‘butties’‥paid him his wages out of the 2s. 3d. per ton which they received for getting the coal.


20. To take hold of (something) in one's hands.

c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Baptist 1100 Þis tyrand‥in hand a knyfe can gete. c1400 Melayne 104 His swerd in his hand he gat. 1592 R. D. Hypnerotomachia 88 Getting him by the winges, she was about to plucke of his fethers.


21. a. To get hold of, capture (a person); also (in recent colloquial use, esp. in perf. and pa. tense), to have an advantage over (another), to ‘corner’. Also, to puzzle, perplex, nonplus. So to get (someone) where one wants him (or her): to have at one's mercy; to render subservient, dependent, etc.

1596 Spenser State Irel. Wks. (Globe) 624/1 Many of them be such losells and scatterlings, as that they cannot easely by any sheriff‥be gotten. 1607 Shakes. Cor. v. iv. 39 The Plebeians haue got your Fellow Tribune, And hale him vp and downe. 1868 Harper's Mag. Mar. 538/2 Scratching his head a minute, Benjamin F. replied: ‘Well, I confess your Honor's got me there!’ 1879 ‘Cavendish’ Card Ess. 198 Second hand put on knave, saying, ‘Now I've got you!’ 1887 F. Francis Jr. Saddle & Mocassin xiii. 236 Who was Navajo? Ah, that's where you've got me, young man. Heaven knows. 1888 H. F. Lester Hartas Maturin III. vi. 157 Yes‥I did. I don't deny it. You've got me there. 1906 W. Churchill Coniston i. xiv. 171 ‘What's the name of your gal?’ ‘Well,’ said Mr. Hopkins, ‘I guess you've got me. We did christen her Lily, but she didn't turn out exactly Lily.‥ I guess her name's Cassandra.’ 1936 W. de la Mare Wind blows Over 32 ‘That's Mistaken Point,’ he said. ‘Why was it mistaken?’ He shook his head.‥ ‘That's got me, miss,’ he replied. 1939 A. Thirkell Before Lunch iii. 76 You only want to get her where you want her. Most people are like that. 1968 A. Clarke Darkened Room iii. 41 Silly young fool, I thought angrily; he's got you where he wants you.


b. colloq. what has got (——)?: what has befallen or happened to, what has become of (——)?

1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 124 They all at once, on looking round‥enquired what had got Carr.


c. To succeed in taking or catching (a person or animal); spec. (orig. U.S.) to succeed in killing or injuring; to shoot or kill.

1853 ‘P. Paxton’ Yankee in Texas 118 [A Texan] does not kill his game, he saves or gets it, or makes it come. 1887 F. Francis Saddle & Mocassin vii. 138 They'll get you one of these days, Colonel, when you are driving around in your wagon. 1899 B. Tarkington Gentlemen fr. Indiana ix. 160 Wiley,‥you don't think they've got him? 1900 E. Glyn Visits Eliz. 50 She did not hit any rabbits, but she got a gardener in the leg. 1908 Daily Chron. 16 Sept. 7/5 This climate is sure to get a white man sooner or later. 1917 ‘S. Rohmer’ Hand of FuManchu (1920) viii. 65, I turned, dizzily, to see Fletcher sinking to his knees, one hand clutching his breast. ‘She got me…with the knife,’ he whispered. 1932 [see agent n. 4b]. 1951 R. Campbell Light on Dark Horse xxiii. 334 He never told me whether he was implicated in the attempt to ‘get’ Guillermo, or not.


d. To exercise, worry, annoy. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

1867 B. Harte Condensed Novels 280 To have let bigger things go by, and to be taken in by this cheap trick‥is what gets me. 1904 W. H. Smith Promoters xii. 190, I wish to the Lord he hadn't been so quick about it. That's what gets me. 1926 W. Deeping Sorrell & Son xxix, ‘Do you think he minds?’ ‘I know he doesn't. But it gets me.’ 1960 B. Cobb Don't lie to Police ix. 149 It got me—her talking that way.


e. To enthral, attract, appeal to; to touch emotionally, to obsess. colloq.

1913 R. Brooke Let. 20 Nov. (1968) 532 It's the Rhythm that gets you. 1916 To-Day 11 Nov. 50/3 The ‘curtain’ on that dog walking across the stage and sticking his cold nose into the hand of his lonely master always used to get me. 1928 F. N. Hart Bellamy Trial i. 6 ‘It [sc. murder]'s always interested me more than anything else.’‥ ‘Well, don't let it get you. I'd just keep it as a hobby.’ 1938 G. Greene Brighton Rock ii. i. 68 ‘It gets you,’ the Boy said, ‘it gets you,’ surrendering himself to the huge brazen suggestion. 1958 B. Hamilton Too Much of Water xi. 243 ‘How was it that the ‘Dichterliebe’ made you cry?’ ‘I can't answer that. Somehow it got me.’


22. a. To succeed in finding (what is required).

1615 J. Stephens Satyr. Ess. 297 Like a Trumpeter in the fields, that shifts places to get an eccho. 1670 Narborough Jrnl. in Acc. Sev. Late Voy. (1711) 114, I caused the Lead to be cast forth, but could not get ground at eighty Fathom. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. x. 242 To stand no farther to the northward than is‥necessary for the getting a westerly wind. 1865 Kingsley Herew. xxx, Driving them mad and desperate just that you may get a handle against them. 1873 Black Pr. Thule xxvi, Her father‥wondered what he could get to scold her about.


b. To obtain an audible signal from (a radio or television transmitter or station); to ‘pick up’.

1899 Windsor Mag. X. 145/2 Another station can always get us in a few minutes. 1921 Wireless World XI. 571/1 To ensure that the signals be picked up if it is at all possible to get them. Ibid. 586/2 If it be possible to get the Dutch concerts‥with this three-valve set. 1924 Wireless Ann. 25 Hello, did you get me? 8 XY standing by. 1947 M. Lowry Under Volcano vi. 162 Hugh‥turned the radio dial back and forth, trying to get San Antonio. 1965 H. C. Woodruff Short Wave Listener's Guide (chapter for U.K. readers), Although one may expect to be able to get the majority of the stations in this list, the frequencies‥may well be different from those quoted‥for American reception.


c. To get in touch by telephone with (a person or place).

1907 [see sense 7d, above]. 1908 G. B. Shaw Let. 1 July (1956) 126, I have just telephoned Stella.‥ I tried to get Mrs. Pat herself.‥ I also tried to get Forbes‥but he was out. 1958 Wodehouse Cocktail Time xxi. 174 He took up the receiver.‥ ‘I hear you've been trying to get me. What's your trouble?’


d. To answer (a telephone, door-bell, etc.); usu. to get it.

1941 Thurber & Nugent Male Animal i. 29 (Doorbell rings.)‥ Tommy (going to door). I'll get it.


23. colloq. To take, ‘have’, eat (one's dinner, etc.).

1888 Sheffield Gloss. s.v., Come and get your tea with us. 1892 ‘J. S. Winter’ Mere Luck i, Here, get your dinner, my lad.


24. The perfect tense is used in familiar language in senses equivalent to those of the present tense of have or possess. (Cf. Gr. κεκτῆσθαι to possess, lit. to have acquired.) So (colloq. or vulgar) in recent use to have got to = ‘to have to’, to be obliged to (see have 7); also (orig. U.S.) in the sense of ‘must’, ‘to be certainly’.

[1596 Shakes. Merch. V. ii. ii. 99 What a beard hast thou got; thou hast got more haire on thy chin, then Dobbin my philhorse has on his taile.] 1607 —— Timon i. ii. 26 Fie, th' art a churle, ye haue got a humour there Does not become a man. 1699 T. C[ockman] Tully's Offices (1706) 234 But I, who han't got such a strength of Genius. 1712 J. James tr. Le Blond's Gardening 144 They have got a Custom of heading it from Time to Time. 1738 Swift Pol. Conversat. 68 Miss, you have got my Handkerchief; pray, let me have it. 1775 Johnson Let. to Boswell 23 Dec., I have just now got a cough; but it has never yet hindered me from sleeping. 1839–40 Thackeray Catherine v, He has‥got C. R. in blue upon his right arm. 1865 ‘L. Carroll’ Alice in Wonderland iv. 54 The first thing I've got to do is to grow to my right size again. Ibid. 57 I'd nearly forgotten that I've got to grow up again. 1875–7 Ruskin Morn. in Florence (1882) 129 Quite ‘from the heart’—such hearts as the people have got. 1875 ‘Mark Twain’ in Atlantic Monthly Mar. 283/2 This has got to be learned. 1876 Ruskin Fors Clav. VI. lxx. 315, I am very doubtful‥whether you have wit enough to understand a word more of what I have got to say this month. 1878 Jevons Primer Pol. Econ. 12 As a general rule the banker has not got in his possession the money which he owes to his customers. 1887 A. Birrell Obiter Dicta Ser. ii. 125 What‥has the general public got to do with literature? 1889 A. V. Carr Marg. Maliphant II. xvii. 42 The thing has got to be fought out. 1919 E. Jordan Girl in Mirror (1925) iv. 79 You'll have to see me every day. I've got to look after you. 1968 Amer. N. & Q. Mar. 104/1 If there's cockfighting today it's got to be in the bluegrass around Lexington, Kentucky. 1968 L. O'Donnell Face of Crime (1969) ix. 125 Now I was really appalled. ‘You've got to be kidding.’ 1969 R. Airth Snatch! vi. 61 He said to Morland, ‘This guy has got to be a comedian.’


¶The pa. pple. is also used colloq. with omission of (I) have. Cf. gotcha, gotcher, gotta.

1849 Knickerbocker XXXIV. 12 They got no principles. They got no platform to stand onto. 1857 Quinland I. 1 Got an hour to spare—thought I'd just run in and see what you were all about. 1884 [see get-out 1]. 1887 M. E. Wilkins Humble Romance 370 What you got there, grandma? 1911 R. D. Saunders Col. Todhunter i. 11 Oh, of course, you got to laugh at me. 1911 J. F. Wilson Land Claimers ix. 118 But I got several plans, and I need ye. 1941 [see sense 14d]. 1967 [see Gawd.].


II. 25. To gain, reach, arrive at (a place).

a1300 Cursor M. 12382 Forþ in pes he bad þam ga‥Til þai had geten þair herd a-gain. a1375 Joseph Arim. 523 Hedde þei geten þat holt‥þei mihten haue do muche harm. a1547 Surrey Æneid ii. 264 With sound of broken waves they gate the strand. 1578 T. N. tr. Conq. W. India 31 The fleete sayled to get the coast of Yucatan. 1613 Purchas Pilgrimage (1614) 504 The men saved themselves, and‥built a Carvall, wherein to get the Continent. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. App. 2 If the Wind blows strong out, and you cannot get the Harbour, you must anchor.


III. 26. To beget, procreate (said of the male parent); now rare exc. of animals, esp. horses. Const. on, upon. †In early use occas. of both parents.
[Quot. 1300 is the only instance in our material in which the word begins with ȝ instead of g; as the sense is here identical with that of biȝeten, beget v., the word seems to be either a shortening of the native compound vb. or an assimilation of the adopted Scandinavian simple vb. to the form of the compound.]

c1300 Leg. Gregory 132 He miȝt se þe sinnes sore, Hou he was ȝeten and of wham. c1300 Havelok 495 Sweren y wole, þat bircabein Neuere yete me ne gat. c1330 R. Brunne Chron. (1810) 27 Fourtene childre he gate opon tuo wifes. 1382 Wyclif Ecclus. iii. 8 He shal serue to them that geeten hym. c1400 Destr. Troy 290 Ercules was getton of a god on a gret lady. c1450 Merlin 213 On hir he gat a doughter the same nyght that he had geten Gonnore on his wife. 1523 Fitzherb. Husb. §68 It is a horse foole, bycause a horse gate it. 1594 2nd Pt. Contention (1843) 143 Whosoeuer got thee, there thy mother stands. 1676 Hobbes Iliad i. 265 Though you be strong and on a Goddess got. c1704 Prior Henry & Emma 136 What groom shall get, and 'squire maintain the child. 1727 Arbuthnot John Bull ii. iv, Hocus loved her best, believing her to be his own, got upon the body of Mrs. Bull. 1760 R. Heber Horse Matches ix. 144 Bay Horse‥sure in getting stock. 1845 Ford Handbk. Spain i. 53 It means strictly speaking the foal of an ass got by a horse. 1859 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. XX. ii. 350 Thoroughbred Stallions for getting hunters. 1923 R. Graves Feather Bed 23 We are his sons Got on she-furies of our Northern gales.
fig. 1691 T. H[ale] Acc. New Invent. 19 If they were under any disbelief themselves, or aimed at the getting any in others, touching the Truth of Fact now discoursed upon [etc.]. 1733 Islington Pref., This Pamphlet‥'Twas got, conceived and born in six Hours' space.


IV. With compl. indicating some change effected in the position or state of the object.


27. Followed by a prep. or adv. of place: a. To succeed in bringing, conveying, putting, causing to come or go (to, from, into, out of a place, through, over, etc. a space).
As get may be apprehended as the equivalent of come to have, a static prep. is sometimes used, e.g. ‘If I can get the key in the hole.’

[c1350 Will. Palerne 2895 Þe grettest of þe grim bestes he gat to prison sone.] c1450 St. Cuthbert (Surtees) 6024 Þare was a monke of durham To helpe to kary þis bell hame‥ he did his bisynes ilk a dele to durham it to gett. 1568 E. Tilney Disc. Marriage Eivb, If you perceive him in such case‥speake hym faire‥till you get him to bed. 1627 Capt. Smith Seaman's Gram. ix. 38 He commands them to get the sailes to the yards. 1669 Sturmy Mariner's Mag. 17 Go hawl down the Yeard, and get the Sail into the Ship. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 25 We were forc'd to get a Rope from the Ship to the watering-place. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. ii. 133 We bent the cable to the spare anchor, and got it over the ship's side. 1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §318 The wind‥blowed too fresh for her to be gotten into the Gut. 1859 Jephson Brittany ii. 11 The next point was to get my little knapsack through the custom-house. 1888 A. de G. Stevens Miss Hildreth II. iv. 74 The same powerful influence that got her out of Russia‥has now sent her back.


b. refl. To betake oneself to or convey oneself away from a place; to make one's way, to go; esp. in imperative phrases, as get thee (you) away, hence, in, out, etc. (Cf. 28c.) Now only arch.

1513 More in Grafton Chron. (1568) II. 765 [She] got her selfe in all the hast possible‥out of the palace of Westminster. 1530 Palsgr. 562/1 Get the hence. Ibid. 562/2, I get me hence‥I get me out of the waye‥I get me a syde. 1579 Gosson Sch. Abuse (Arb.) 54 Shut vp the Schoole, and get you home. 1591 Shakes. Two Gent. iv. iv. 64 Goe, get thee hence, and finde my dog againe. 1603 Knolles Hist. Turks (1621) 53 [He] got him up into the highest tower of the pallace. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 17 Early the next morning I got me above Deck. 1733 Fielding Intrig. Chambermaid i. iii, Hist! hist! get you both about your business. 1828 Hawthorne Fanshawe iv. (1883) 115 The elderly men‥gat themselves silently to their steeds, and hied homeward. 1886 G. T. Stokes Celtic Ch. (1888) 128 He got himself back to his beloved Iona.


c. To bring, succeed in bringing (oneself, another person, a thing) into or out of a certain position or state. to get with child: to make pregnant. to get (a person) upon: to bring (him) to talk about (a subject).
As in a, the preposition may be of static import.

1530 Palsgr. 562/2, I get a wenche with chylde, je engrosse. 1592 Shakes. Rom. & Jul. v. i. 84 Buy food, and get thy selfe in flesh. 1601 —— Jul. C. i. i. 34 To weare out their shooes, to get myselfe into more worke. 1607 —— Timon iii. i. 30 Honesty is his [fault]. I ha told him on't, but I could nere get him from't. 1608 —— Per. i. i. 168 If I can get him within my Pistols length, Ile make him sure enough. 1659 B. Harris Parival's Iron Age 94 Having gotten on foot, a fresh Army of sixteen thousand men. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 32 A wild Ass, which after a long Chase they got within shot and wounded. 1715 Leoni Palladio's Archit. (1742) II. 59 Sylvia being soon after got with child. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. iv. 161 We exerted ourselves in getting our ships in readiness for the sea. 1802 M. Edgeworth Moral T. (1806) I. xv. 121 He was sorry to find that Forester had gotten himself into such a scrape. 1822 G. W. Manby Voy. Greenland (1823) 19 He‥got the ship under close-reefed topsails. 1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 289 Having‥got our prizes in tow, we stretched about a league to the east~ward. 1875 Jowett Plato (ed. 2) I. 26 A difficulty into which I have got myself. 1891 M. M. Dowie Girl in Karp. ix. 111 We fell a-talking about one thing and another. Very soon I got him upon legends and tales of the district. 1896 Law Times C. 508/1 Mr. Justice Grantham succeeded in getting the animal under control.


d. to get (someone) at it: to have (a person) ‘on’, to make fun of. slang.

1958 F. Norman Bang to Rights iii. 136 You see I did this on perpose just to get her at it. Ibid. 151 He had half sused that the boggie was getting him at it.


28. With pa. pple. as complement: a. To cause, or succeed in causing, the specified action to be performed upon (a person or thing). Also refl., and (rarely, with intentional quaintness) in pass.

1500–20 Dunbar Poems xliii. 43 Thay get indoist Alhaill thair evidens. 1548 Invent. Ch. Goods (Surtees) 119, I can get no such some [= sum] confessed. 1560 Whitehorne tr. Machiavelli's Arte of Warre (1573) 73b, The first thing that he ought to doo is to get described and paincted oute all the countrie. 1628 Hobbes Thucyd. (1822) 127 Without gifts there was nothing to be gotten done amongst them. 1689 Tryal Bps. 134 These Declarations which they were commanded to take care of getting read. 1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. (1778) II. 120 (Le Dimanche), La Fleur‥had got himself so gallantly array'd, I scarce knew him. 1779 R. Graves Columella I. 184 Poor Barty‥had applied, and got himself appointed a writer to the‥East India Company. 1843 Carlyle Past & Pr. iv. i, The Bravest men‥had here‥been got selected. 1870 —— Corr. w. Emerson (1883) II. 331, I am by no means certain‥that the whole of this amendatory programme will get itself performed to equal satisfaction. 1876 Ruskin Fors Clav. VI. lxvii. 234, I have more to say when my lecture on Jewels can be got published. 1877 C. M. Yonge Cameos Ser. iii. I. 3 The difficulty was, not in making laws, but in getting them obeyed. 1877 Mrs. Oliphant Makers Flor. Introd. 12 One of the most costly, splendid, and elaborate structures in the world‥got itself built.


b. To incur or suffer some specified injury to (something belonging to one, a part of the body).

1787 T. Jefferson Writ. (1859) II. 249, I got my right wrist dislocated. 1790 J. B. Moreton Mann. W. Ind. 23 To avoid heats and colds‥as well as getting your feet wet. 1889 Doyle Micah Clarke vi. 47 You might chance to get your own skin beaten.


c. to get oneself gone: to take oneself away, go, be off; esp. get thee (you) gone. (Cf. 27b.) Now only arch.

1590 Shakes. Com. Err. iii. i. 84 Go, get thee gon, fetch me an iron Crow. 1632 J. Hayward tr. Biondi's Eromena 85 Repose your selfe on your pillow, or I will get me gone. 1678 Otway Friendship in F. 26 Sir Nob. Well, get thee gone for an Arch-wagg. 1712 Arbuthnot John Bull i. xii, Get you gone into the country, to look after your mother's poultry. 1891 Illustr. Lond. News 21 Mar. 382/2 He was recommended to get him gone.


29. With adjective: To bring into the specified state; esp. in to get ready.

1590 Spenser F.Q. i. i. 19 He‥knitting all his force, got one hand free. 1605 Shakes. Lear i. iv. 8 Let me not stay a iot for dinner, go get it ready. 1639 T. Brugis tr. Camus' Mor. Relat. 247 The maid runnes against the chamber door, gets it open [etc.]. 1674 tr. Martiniere's Voy. N. Countries 22, I caused the Horses and break-fast to be got ready. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 133 This morning we‥got every thing ready to depart. 1818 M. G. Lewis Jrnl. W. Ind. (1834) 129, I visited the hospital while breakfast was getting ready. 1847 Marryat Childr. N. Forest xi, Let us first get him all right again. 1889 J. Masterman Scotts of Bestminster II. viii. 27 The boats were got ready and the passengers collected.


30. a. With an infinitive (now always preceded by to): To induce, prevail upon (a person), succeed in causing (a thing), to do something; in weaker sense, to cause or set (a person) to do something for one.

c1460 Towneley Myst. xxi. 218 And so myght we gett hym som word for to say. 1596 Shakes. Tam. Shr. i. ii. 38, I bad the rascall knocke vpon your gate, And could not get him for my heart to do it. 1598 —— Merry W. ii. ii. 76 They could neuer get her so much as sippe on a cup with the prowdest of them all. 1612 Drayton Poly-olb. i. 443 Their King Groffarius [they] get to raise his powerfull force. 1647 W. Browne tr. Gomberville's Polexander iii. v. 134 Get him be propitious to thee. Ibid. iv. v. 339 By the helpe of a great tumult which he heard in the lower towne, hee got slide some troopes into the enemies intrenchments. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 83 The women‥got their husbands to sit down again. 1701 W. Wotton Hist. Rome, Marcus i. 9 His Mother had much ado to get him but to cover the Bed‥with Skins. 1771 E. Griffith tr. Viaud's Shipwreck 51 It would be impossible to get them to listen to reason. 1791 ‘G. Gambado’ Ann. Horsem. x. (1809) 108 The horse‥went oddly; and I got the hostler‥to get up instead of me. 1807–8 W. Irving Salmag. xvii. (1860) 389 At such times there was no getting Will to join in our walks. 1887 A. Birrell Obiter Dicta Ser. ii. 75 He promptly got a book~seller to pirate Curll's edition.


b. With passive infinitive: To cause to undergo the specified action. Obs. rare. (Cf. 28a.)

c1592 Marlowe Jew of Malta iii. iii, Abig. I am bold to sollicite thee. Fry. Wherein? Abig. To get me be admitted for a Nun. 1681 H. More Exp. Dan. 166 Laodice‥got him to be poisoned. 1736 T. Lediard Life Marlborough I. 20 His Father got him to be made Page of Honour.


V. intr.


31. a. To succeed in coming or going, to bring oneself to, from, into, out of, etc. (a place or position), through, over, etc. (a space, an intervening object); also, in weaker sense, to come in the course or at the end of a journey to. †Of land: to stretch, extend (obs.). Used with any of the preps. which usually follow vbs. of motion, also with advs. of motion to or from a place, as hither (here), thither (there), hence, thence, and adverbial and prepositional phrases, as to get as far as, to get the length of. Formerly conjugated with be.
For fig. phrases, as to get to the bottom of, root of, windward of, see the ns.

a1300 [see get away (61), get out (72)]. a1375 Joseph Arim. 497 Þei han geten on hem þe lengþe of a gleyue. 1375 Barbour Bruce xviii. 454 Thai bar thaim swa That thai ar gottyn aboun the bra. a1400 Sir Perc. 2225 Be that so nere getis he, That scho myghte nangatis fle. a1533 Ld. Berners Huon lxi. 212 Yf they perceyue vs, we shal neuer get hense. 1548 Hall Chron., Hen. V, 74 Many‥[were] apprehended before they could get to the castel. 1585 T. Washington tr. Nicholay's Voy. i. xx. 25b, He found meanes to recover a barke, intoo the which he and his men got. 1593 Shakes. Lucr. 549 From earths dark womb some gentle gust doth get. 1598 B. Jonson Ev. Man in Hum. ii. ii. (1601) D4a, S'lid I am afeard they will know me, would I could get by them. 1639 T. Brugis tr. Camus' Mor. Relat. 192 Basse or Low-Brittaine, is a corner of the earth which gets farre into the Ocean. 1647 W. Browne tr. Gomberville's Polexander iv. v. 326 Assoone as she was gotten into a grove of Orange-trees‥she call'd for Palantus. 1667 Milton P.L. ix. 594 Amid the Tree now got‥to pluck and eat my fill I spar'd not. 1693 Humours of Town 18 Let us get into the most airy Room of the House. 1701 W. Wotton Hist. Rome, Alexander iii. 510 Maximus was got as far as Ravenna. 1728 Newton Chronol. Amended i. 181 Hercules that year got into Italy. 1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §262 The buss‥had got a considerable distance from the buoy;‥we had really got out of the accustomed place. 1820 Southey Life Wesley II. 452 No less than ninety persons set out in pursuit of him; but he was got beyond their reach. 1847 Marryat Childr. N. Forest v, We never can get across this patch of clear grass without being seen. 1849 Macaulay Hist. Eng. v. I. 609 The drums of Dumbarton's regiment beat to arms; and the men got fast into their ranks. 1867 Howells Ital. Journ. 71 We were got no further than Porto Longone.


b. To reach, attain, come to an end aimed at, or a condition towards which progress has been made. to get to blows: to come to blows, to begin to fight.

1626 Bacon Sylva §744 Those that are very Cold, and especially in their Feet, cannot get to Sleepe. 1701 Swift Contests Nobles & Com. Wks. 1755 II. i. 30 The Carthaginians were declining, because the balance was got too much on the side of the people. 1751 R. Paltock Peter Wilkins I. xxvi. 257 He‥got to champing the Blade. 1798 T. Jefferson Writ. (1859) IV. 205 The scene has not yet got to its height. 1888 McCarthy & Mrs. Praed Ladies' Gallery III. xv. 298 He‥succeeded in getting to speech of a police officer. 1891 Leeds Mercury 27 Apr. 4/4 The hostile parties got to blows and stone-throwing. 1895 19th Cent. Aug. 322, I don't think that I get quite as far as having views of my own.


c. colloq. or slang. where has it got to: what has become of it. to get there: (U.S.) to attain one's object, be successful in an undertaking. to get nowhere, not to get anywhere: not to reach any goal or object; to make no progress; to achieve nothing. to get somewhere: to be successful; to make some progress.

1887 F. Francis Jr. Saddle & Mocassin viii. 144 He said as he'd been gambling, and was two hundred dollars ahead of the town. He ‘got there with both feet’ at starting. 1888 N.Y. Herald 29 July (Farmer), Although not a delegate he got there all the same. 1889 J. K. Jerome 3 Men in Boat 242 Muttering something about its being extraordinary where his umbrella could have got to. 1891 Daily News 18 Nov. 5/1 As the humorous American phrase goes, ‘he gets there all the same’. 1923 H. C. Witwer Fighting Blood i. 18 I'm going to get somewhere! Right now I ain't got no more idea than a baby of what I'm going to be. 1925 New Yorker 14 Nov. 13/3 If he was sharper, this Sandburg, he'd get nowhere. 1932 W. Cather Obscure Destinies i. 84 Mrs. Rosen felt that she was not getting anywhere. 1940 E. H. W. Meyerstein Let. 4 June (1959) 242 Even when Jews ‘get somewhere’—if they marry Englishwomen they are condemned by their wives. 1960 C. Day Lewis Buried Day viii. 174 Unless you get inside their ring you will get nowhere. 1961 Guardian 4 Nov. 7/6 Talking alone will get nowhere.


d. colloq. (orig. U.S.) (often in form git): To be off, ‘clear out’. Also = sense 80g.

1864 Harper's Mag. Oct. 565/2 Belaboring the mules till he was tired, and telling them to ‘git’ till he was hoarse. 1874 ‘Mark Twain’ Sk. 12/1 Then he says, ‘one-two-three-git!’ 1884 Graceville (Minn.) Transcript 25 Aug., He presented a cocked revolver and told them to get, and they got. 1887 F. Francis Jr. Saddle & Mocassin iv. 83 A captain and a full company appeared, but this brave man ‘made them get’. 1888 ‘R. Boldrewood’ Robbery under Arms II. xi. 190 ‘I reckon you're bound to git.’ ‘Yes, Bill, sharp's the word.’ 1889 H. O'Reilly 50 Yrs. on Trial 170, I therefore thought discretion the better part of valour, and the sooner I ‘got’ the better. 1892 H. Nisbet Bushranger's Sweetheart xxiii. 176 None of your damned impertinence. Get. 1893 McCarthy Red Diamonds I. 66 He got up and gitted before we struck ile. 1895 Blackw. Mag. Aug. 282 Our team proceeded with many a ‘git’ and whip crack from their dusky Jehu. 1907 Daily Chron. 21 Nov. 5/1 In other words, as the Americans said, ‘That fleet can get.’ 1938 G. Greene Brighton Rock ii. i. 81 Turn out the light and get. 1959 ‘D. Buckingham’ Wind Tunnel viii. 72, I want you out of the way—so git. And what's more—git quickly. 1967 K. Giles Death & Mr. Prettyman ii. 62 Anybody in a room either gets or pays for another twenty-four hours.


e. quasi-trans. to get one's way(s: to go away, take oneself off. Obs.

1375 Barbour Bruce xix. 683 The fox scathless gat his way. 1606 W. Birnie Kirk-Buriall (1833) 18 Either God must get his way, or be content to dwell in a dedicate Innes to Idoles. 1815 Woman's Will iii. ii, Well, get thy ways for an incorrigible coxcomb.


f. to get by oneself: to escape from company.

1863 Mrs. C. Clarke Shaks. Char. iii. 65 Inexpressibly affecting is that eagerness he betrays to get by himself.


g. To reach the point or stage where; freq. in U.S. const. so. colloq.

1906 E. Dyson Fact'ry 'Ands viii. 98, I got I could pick 'em out in me sleep. 1944 E. S. Gardner Case of Crooked Candle (1947) xviii. 193 You get so you know your way around. 1967 Boston Sunday Globe 23 Apr. B. 41/5 It's getting so now that real estate news is getting ‘daily space’‥to match the Vietnam war stories.


32. a. Followed by infinitive (with to): To attain, reach, secure an opportunity of (being or doing something), to come (to be or do); to acquire a habit of (doing).

1583 Stubbes Anat. Abus. ii. (1882) 79 Then get they to be chaplines to honorable and noble personages. 1591 Shakes. 1 Hen. VI, i. iv. 25 By what meanes got's[t] thou to be releas'd. 1649 J. Ellistone tr. Behmen's Ep. xxxii. (1886) 15 All those that shall get to read them. 1664 Power Exp. Philos. 21 We‥could never get to see it quick in the Microscope. 1701 W. Wotton Hist. Rome 272 By the Interest of Laetus‥he got to be sent into Illyricum, to command the Legions there. 1833 New Monthly Mag. XXXVII. 22 They get to look upon every law as a mere conventional enactment. 1856 Ruskin Mod. Paint. IV. v. xix. §32 The evil that God sends to warn us gets to be forgotten, and the evil that He sends to be mended by us gets left unmended. 1891 Blackw. Mag. CXLIX. 103/1 It is not quite two years since we got to be friends.


b. Followed by pr. pple. (or, formerly, by a gerund governed by on, which is now omitted, so that the two constructions are no longer distinguishable): To come to be (doing something). Also Sc., to find opportunity for (doing something).

1727 Wodrow Corr. (1843) III. 298 Probably I'll scarce get writing, the Assembly will sit so late. 1759 Warburton Lett. (1809) 288 And now I am got on transcribing, I will send you a passage or two from some late letters. a1810 Tannahill Barrochan Jean Poems (1846) 117 Naething got growing for Barrochan Jean. 1872 Ruskin Fors Clav. xix. 10 Instead of looking at the sun, I got thinking about the dry bed of the stream, just beneath. 1889 Mrs. H. Martin Common Clay III. ix. 144 When they got talking together it was Greek to me.


c. to get going: to begin; to start talking, acting, etc., vigorously; to get into full swing; to ‘get a move on’. Also trans., to start; to render (someone) excited, talkative, etc. See also to get cracking s.v. crack v. 22b.

1897 O. W. Holmes Pollock-Holmes Lett. (1942) I. 77 He is really fine when he gets going on the Church of England. 1898 E. N. Westcott David Harum 391 David is not only living, but appears almost no older than when we first knew him, and still just as likely to ‘git goin'’ on occasion. 1920 S. Lewis Main St. xxviii. 326 She kidded him along, and got him going. 1932 ‘A. Bridge’ Peking Picnic iv. 38 She's rather a character, you know, when you get her going. 1956 A. H. Compton Atomic Quest i. 8 If this task is as important as you men say‥we must get going. Ibid. iii. 189 To get the Hanford plant going.


33. a. With adjective (or equivalent phrase, or, occasionally, a descriptive n.) as complement: To make oneself; to become, or succeed in becoming; to grow (with comparatives). to get better, get well: to recover from an illness. to get drunk: to become intoxicated. to get clear of, get quit of, get rid of, get shut of: see clear, etc. to get left: see leave v.1 7d; to get lost (slang, orig. U.S.), to go away; to take oneself off (freq. imp.); to get next to: see next a. 13c.

1596 Shakes. Merch. V. i. i. 134 How to get cleere of all the debts I owe. 1659 B. Harris Parival's Iron Age 169 Having, with very much adoe, gotten loose from their Enemies [etc.]. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 220 They were both gotten sufficiently Drunk. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 179 He‥got past me before I could get aware of him. 1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. (1778) II. 158 (Paris), I had got master of my secret just in time. 1776 Trial of Nundocomar 23/1 He was at first very ill, then got better; he is now worse. 1810 Sporting Mag. XXXVI. 60 After which he [a horse] got lame. 1821 Keats Isabella xxiv, [He] went in haste, to get in readiness, With belt, and spur, and bracing huntsman's dress. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 227 He will smoke himself into a mummy, for he gets thinner day by day. 1857 Ruskin Pol. Econ. Art 20 They got all wrong in their experiments. 1862 Temple Bar V. 254, I am getting an old man, and I'm ailing. 1874 G. W. Dasent Half a Life III. 88 You must not suppose we got very great friends with Honora Tailby all at once. 1878 Huxley Physiogr. 55 Almost everything gets smaller as it is cooled. 1885 Bookseller July 650/1 Retail bookselling seems to be getting a less remunerative business every day. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 24 France‥got ready to resist invasion. 1891 Illustr. Sporting & Dram. News 10 Jan. 581/3 He worked hard, and soon got chums with the swells. 1947 F. Wakeman Hucksters v. 66 If Kimberly were to walk in tomorrow‥I'd tell him to get lost. 1959 Times 25 Sept. 9/2 Tell him to get lost. 1961 ‘B. Wells’ Day Earth caught Fire ix. 145 ‘Cut that out, man,’ the beatnik said.‥ ‘Get lost, man,’ replied Pete. 1962 ‘H. Calvin’ System xiii. 179 The last time Carabine came in I told him to get lost. 1967 Wodehouse Company for Henry v. 80 Can I have a word with you?‥ In private. Get lost, young Jane.


b. how —— can you get?: a colloq. phr. implying that the person referred to has an extreme amount or an excess of the quality described by the adjective.

1951 H. Wouk Caine Mutiny vii. 488 How unconscious can you get? Don't you know to-day's Navy Day? 1966 ‘A. Garve’ Murderer's Fen ii. iii. 84 Damn it, the writer himself admits he isn't sure.—How vague can you get? 1967 J. Fleming No Bones about It 80 Ben! How old-fashioned can you get? 1968 ‘P. Hobson’ Titty's Dead xii. 125 There's been an affair.‥ And I never twigged it. How dim can you get?


34. With pa. pple. a. With intransitive pa. pple.: To accomplish or complete an action. Now only colloq. (rare).

1716 Wodrow Corr. (1843) II. 117 If we could get fled I would remove all my family from this. 1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. (1778) I. 2 By three I had got sat down to my dinner.


b. With passive pple.: To cause or procure oneself to be treated in a certain way or to undergo a certain action; also, in weaker sense, to come to be the object of a certain action. Often taking the place of be as a passive-forming auxiliary where a continuous state is not intended to be expressed.

1652 Gaule Magastrom. 361 A certain Spanish pretending Alchymist‥got acquainted with foure rich Spanish merchants. 1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §266 We had got (as we thought) compleatly moored upon the 13th of May. 1814 D. H. O'Brien Captiv. & Escape 113, I got supplied with bread, cheese and a pint of wine. 1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 183 We got entangled among a quantity of heavy drift-ice. 1826 Disraeli Viv. Grey ii. i, His Lordship was voted a bore, and got shelved. 1848 J. H. Newman Loss & Gain 264 ‘The taste, I suppose, is peculiar’‥‘Just at first’, answered Campbell; ‘but one soon gets used to it’. 1867 Freeman Norm. Conq. (1876) I. iii. 128 The different tenures got confounded. 1881 Dr. Gheist 190 You will be astonished to hear that I am going to get married. 1887 Rider Haggard Jess vi, I‥got caught in the storm. 1891 Nation (N.Y.) 19 Nov. 389/3 It may leave on your readers an impression unfair to Prof. Royce if nothing more gets said.


c. Similarly to get done with = to have done with. (Cf. to be done, do v. B. 8b.)

1827 Carlyle Germ. Rom. III. 156 To get the sooner done with it, he had used to begin his devotion‥before leaving that place where [etc.].


VI. intr. With preps., in specialized senses.
(For unspecialized uses see sense 31 and the preps.)


35. get above ——. To rise superior to, surmount, overcome; to recover from (an illness, etc.). Obs. Cf. get over, 46.

1705 Stanhope Paraphr. II. 315 Contempt of the World, Heavenly Mindedness, Subduing our Appetites and Passions, suppose us present with the Creatures and the Passions we get above. 1754 Richardson Grandison V. xxviii. 175 Religion‥required, as she thought, that she should get above all regards for me.


36. get across ——. See across B. 1c and 2b.


37. get around ——. = get round —— (47a, b). U.S.

1849 G. F. Ruxton Life in Far West 89 One from the Land of Cakes‥sought to ‘get around’ (in trade) a right ‘smart’ Yankee, but couldn't ‘shine’. 1875 Mrs. Stowe We & Neighbors iii. 38 Eva is my girl; I sha'n't let anyone get around her. 1875 ‘Mark Twain’ in Atlantic Monthly Mar. 283/2 This has got to be learned; there isn't any getting around it. 1894 —— Those Twins iv. 362 There is no getting around proof like that.


38. get at ——. Also in indirect passive. a. To get hold of, come at, reach, arrive at.

1771 E. Griffith tr. Viaud's Shipwreck 33 We gave him all our handkerchiefs, and what line we could get at. 1833 H. Martineau Brooke Farm x. 117 A ledge of rock which cannot be got at but by his companions letting him down by a rope. 1840–1 De Quincey Style Wks. XI. 175 Augustus was much of a blockhead; a truth which we utter boldly, now that none of his thirty legions can get at us. 1893 Law Times Rep. LXVIII. 302/1 The pipe could not be seen or got at without removing a portion of the cargo.


b. To attain to knowledge of, to find out, ascertain, learn.

1793 J. B. Burges in 14th Rep. Hist. MSS. Comm. App. v. 488 Baron Jacobi called; his sole intention appeared to be to get at the nature and extent of Lord Malmesbury's instructions. 1847–9 Helps Friends in C. Ser. i. (1851) I. 10 To get at the truth of any history is good. 1873 Symonds Grk. Poets iii. 89 There are no means of getting at the thoughts of men. 1883 Law Times 20 Oct. 412/1, I cannot see‥the process by which the court will get at the facts on which its judgment is to hinge.


c. colloq. or slang. To tamper with; to influence by underhand means, to corrupt, bribe; to practise dishonest tricks on (a horse, etc.) in order to prevent (it) from winning. Also, to solicit or pester; to try to influence.

1865 J. S. Mill in Morn. Star 6 July, That part of the electors whose minds are to be got at by money—who are to be reached by trickery. 1870 Spectator 23 Apr. 514/2 That, of course, makes it profitable‥for scoundrels to ‘get at’ horses. 1871 Sat. Rev. 9 Sept. 329/2 It is quite clear that some of them [imported artisans] have been ‘got at’, and it is easy to conceive the terrorism, which [etc.]. 1880 Daily News 18 Dec., A bulldog can be ‘got at’ in this way. 1888 Bryce Amer. Commw. II. ii. xxxix. 78 The legislator can be ‘got at’, the people cannot. 1952 W. J. H Sprott Social Psychol. (1964) vii. 123 We are all ‘propaganda conscious’ in the sense that we put up a resistance if we feel we are being ‘got at’. 1958 Times Lit. Suppl. 31 Jan. 57/1 We resent, as the Victorians did not, being ‘got at’ by the social or religious moralist.


d. slang. (a) To attack, assail. (b) To banter, make game of. (Farmer Slang 1893).

1823 J. Constable Let. 2 Aug. (1964) II. 283, I fear my great coat is got at by moths, as I find my father's is that I am come down here with. 1891 Ally Sloper's Half Holiday 3 Jan. 7/1 ‘Your family don't seem to get on, missie?’‥ ‘On! Who're ye gettin' at?’ 1893 Nat. Observer 1 July 176/2 The author's burning anxiety to ‘get at’ capital, his profligate disregard of national prosperity. 1895 Punch 14 Dec. 227/1 Smart women‥delight In ‘getting at’ you in a shameful way. 1957 J. Osborne Entertainer iii. 30 Don't look hurt. I'm not getting at you. I love you very much.


e. To begin; to start work on; to turn one's attention to. U.S. colloq.

1884 ‘Mark Twain’ Lett. to Publishers 14 Apr. (1967) 173 Get at your canvassing early, and drive it with all your might. 1923 H. Crane Let. 6 Feb. (1965) 118, I have been so rushed around‥that I have not yet got at the review for your study.


f. To mean or intend; to hint, imply; usu. in phr. what are you getting at? colloq.

1899 D. Belasco Naughty Anthony ii, in Heart of Maryland (1941) 294 What are you getting at? What do you refer to when you call me the husband? 1921 Collier's 26 Mar. 22/1 ‘Say, what are you gettin' at?’ says the kid, interested at last. 1931 N. Coward Post Mortem vi. 75, I wish I knew what you were getting at.


39. get by ——. To succeed in getting past (someone); to evade. colloq.

1904 S. E. White Blazed Trail Stories ii. v. 199 How he had gotten by the office boy Brown could not conceive. 1919 H. Crane Let. 13 Dec. (1965) 27, I am thoroughly confident about the thing itself since it has got by the particular, hierarchic Josephson.


40. get from ——. To escape from. Obs.

1639 Du Verger tr. Camus' Admir. Events 130 He leapes upon his Mule, and spurring him hard to get from the bawling woman [etc.]. 1699 W. Hacke Collect. Voy. 11 One of the three [Indians]‥got from our men, and run to the Town. 1771 T. Hull Sir W. Harrington (1797) III. 201, I hope she got from him innocent. Ibid. IV. 27, I did get from him, however, and ran to the door.


41. get inside ——. To penetrate; to investigate closely; to achieve a deep or intimate understanding of.

1875 Athenæum 14 Aug. 222/2 More important‥is the power of getting inside a character and revealing it to the public. 1959 Listener 16 July 112/3 No need to stress the good qualities of William Parsons as a vocalist or his ability to get inside a song and really interpret it. Ibid. 23 July 146/1 No one, not even Thurber, ever got inside Harold Ross. Ibid. 150/1 Mr. Denis Constanduros's As Far as the Flagstaff‥got inside the doldrum life of a retired engineer.


42. get into ——. a. To come to be, result in being, in (a certain state or condition).
For special phrases as to get into full swing, deep (hot) water, see the ns.

1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 81 When they are once got into Wine they mind nothing else. Ibid. 284 The King who was got into a pleasant Humour, only Laugh'd at it. 1692 Locke Educ. §131 Wks. 1714 III. 60 Lying is‥so much in fashion among all sorts of People, that a Child‥can scarce be kept, without great Care, from getting into it. 1709 Steele Tatler No. 82 ⁋1 When one is got into such a Way of Thinking. 1771 E. Griffith tr. Viaud's Shipwreck 151 They were got into full cry before we heard them. 1787 ‘G. Gambado’ Acad. Horsemen 40 Before ever your horse gets into motion, clap both your spurs into him pretty sharp. 1801 tr. Damberger's Trav. Africa 57, I had got into a sort of scrape. 1833 Act 3 & 4 Will. IV, c. 46 §104 Where any‥spouts, shores, or pipes, drains or common sewers‥shall get into disrepair. 1862 Temple Bar VI. 401 He used to get into a frightful passion. 1887 Rider Haggard Jess iv, He very soon got more or less into the swing of the thing.


b. To make one's way into (business, favour, office, etc.); to succeed in obtaining.

1598 tr. Linschoten's Voy. 3, I‥vsed all meanes I could to get into his seruice. 1693 Humours of Town 88 Your Physicians Discourse is‥as if they‥are pretending mighty Practice to get into Practice. 1704 J. Pitts Acc. Mahometans 47 Slaves in such places do always strive to get into the Childrens Affections. 1790 J. B. Moreton Mann. W. Ind. 93 When a young man gets into a good employ. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 182 Trade grew much more active after he got into office.


c. colloq. To put on (clothes, etc.).

1690 W. Walker Idiomat. Anglo-Lat. 151 He is gotten into a new dress. 1813 Lady Burghersh Lett. (1893) 38 By that time I shall ‘get into my shoes’ here.


d. To become occupied with, to ‘land in’. Also, to become interested, involved, or absorbed in; to specialize in (sometimes with mixture of sense 42e).

1712 Steele Spect. No. 479 ⁋6 Instead of ‥Displaying Conjugal Love in its natural Beauties‥ I am got into Tales to the Disadvantage of that State of Life. 1938 E. Hemingway Fifth Column (1939) 220 ‘What are you reading?’ ‘Richard Feveral.’ ‘I couldn't get into it.’ 1966 ‘C. Keith’ Elusive Epicure (1968) v. 69 He did advise me one time to get into Early American antique furniture. 1969 It 11–24 Apr. 11/2 What sort of things are you getting into musically now?


e. To penetrate by inquiry, to get knowledge of.

1788 T. Jefferson Writ. (1859) II. 376, I endeavored to get, as well as I could, into the state of national credit there.


f. Of liquor: To take effect upon; render confused or unsteady.

1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 145 This ale gets into my noddle. 1894 Pall Mall Mag. Dec. 576 Ever since I've been holding off from the whisky the least drop gets into my walk.


g. To take possession of; to ‘come over’.

1876 ‘Mark Twain’ Tom Sawyer iii. 37 All through supper his spirits were so high that his aunt wondered ‘what had got into the child’. 1937 I. Baird John xiv. 163 You, too? Why, what's got into you tonight? 1946 D. Stivens in Austral. Short Stories (1951) 386, I dunno what's got into you to-night.


h. To have sexual intercourse with (a woman).

c1888–94 My Secret Life in S. Marcus The Other Victorians (1966) iv. 166, I felt as if I was wicked in getting into her, almost as if I was going to poke my mother. 1922 F. Harris My Life & Loves I. iii. 61 Again I dreamed of Lucille and again I was trying, trying in vain to get into her when again the spasm of pleasure overtook me. 1957 J. Kerouac On Road (1958) 44 I've just got to get into her sister Mary tonight.


43. get off ——. (Cf. 70.) a. To dismount from (a horse). Also (U.S.) to alight from (a train).

1890 Century Mag. July 349/1 When I got off the train, I found myself on a moss-grown platform.


b. To be disinclined for, to give up. c. To obtain release from.

a1806 K. White Lett. (1837) 329, I never get quite off study. 1835 J. Constable Let. 12 Sept. (1967) V. 27, I wish I could get off going there to lecture. 1893 Sir R. Romer in Law Times Rep. LXVIII. 443/1 It appears to me impossible to say that the defendants can get off the contract.


44. get on ——. (Cf. get upon, 51; also 71.) a. To mount (a horse, etc.). to get on one's high horse: see horse.

1613 Purchas Pilgrimage (1614) 502 When the keeper employeth him [the elephant] in any burthen, hee getteth first on his necke. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 220 He got on Horse-back and departed. 1856 G. J. Whyte-Melville Kate Cov. v, Aunt‥really is very formidable when she gets on her high horse.


b. To produce an effect on. Obs.

1647 W. Browne tr. Gomberville's Polexander ii. iv. 270 This discourse got somewhat on the slave, but not enough to bring him wholly to himself.


c. Sport. To come upon, meet with (a fox, etc.).

1694 Acc. Sev. Late Voy. ii. (1711) 94, I got on him [a Bird] the 11th of July.


d. To enter upon (a subject), esp. by chance.

1705 W. Bosman Guinea 158 Since we are got on this Subject, I must not forget to inform you that [etc.].


e. to get on one's feet or legs: to assume a standing position, esp. for the purpose of speaking in public.

1727 Boyer Dict. Angl.-Fr. s.v., To get on one's feet, se lever. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown i. vi, The pounding and cheering‥becoming deafening when old Brooke gets on his legs. 1887 Lowell Democr. 30 Before the authorized and responsible debaters get on their legs.


f. Racing. To stake money upon (a horse).

1884 Punch 18 Oct. 181/1 There is all the difference between getting on an ordinary hack and ‘getting on’ the favourite for the Derby.


g. To affect in such a way as to harass or obsess; to become a source of worry to; esp. in phr. to get on one's nerves (see nerve n. 8e).

1920 R. Macaulay Potterism iii. ii. 127 ‘Never mind Arthur,’ she said. ‘I wouldn't let him get on my mind if I were you, mother.’


45. get outside ——. To eat (occas., to drink). Also, to get outside of. slang.

1886 Green & Hall Jack in Box 15 Here, get outside some grub. 1886 P. G. Ebbutt Emigr. Life Kansas 182 Directly he got outside of a few glasses of whisky, his manner was very different. 1909 S. Watson Wops the Waif xi. 26 So git outside your scran as quick as yer knows how. 1927 Wodehouse Meet Mr. Mulliner viii. 256 He lay there in a sort of delirium, picturing himself getting outside a medium-cooked steak smothered in onions. 1967 D. Campbell in Coast to Coast 1965–6 21 It takes me half an hour to get outside the mixed grill and the ice-cream and coffee.


46. get over ——. (Cf. 74.) a. To overcome, surmount (a difficulty); to evade the force of (evidence); to cease to be troubled or surprised by.

1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., They cannot get over the Prejudice of Education. 1701 W. Wotton Hist. Rome, Alexander ii. 469 [This] was Alexander's great difficulty, which for many years he happily got over. 1764 Gibbon Misc. Wks. (1814) IV. 376 Yet the name of slave was not to be got over. 1783 Ainsworth's Lat. Dict. (Morell) iv. s.v. Bellerophontes, He conquered them, and got safe over several other dangers. 1848 J. H. Newman Loss & Gain 264 All such substances, milk, butter, cheese, oil, have a particular taste at first, which use alone gets over. 1850 Tait's Mag. XVII. 597/1 We have happily got over the prejudice of last century. 1889 Doyle M. Clarke x. 80 No explanation or excuse could get over the fact that the man was dead. a1898 Mod. colloq. I can't get over his being a married man.


b. To recover from (a shock, injury, illness, etc.).

1712 C. Mordaunt Let. in E. Hamilton Mordaunts (1965) iv. 83, I hope she may be in no great danger but got over the Measles as easily as I did. 1769 Goldsm. Rom. Hist. (1786) II. 357 These excesses‥brought on a violent fever, which his constitution was sufficiently strong to get over. 1791 De Foe Crusoe i. xvi, He was‥gotten over his fright. 1839 Thirty-six Yrs. Seafaring Life 219 Such was his state, that no one supposed he ever could get over it [an amputation]. 1877 C. M. Yonge Cameos Ser. iii. xxx. 306, I shall get over this hurt. 1892 Gd. Words May 341/2 A shock that he never got over. 1966 Listener 13 Jan. 77/1 ‘I shall never get over her death‥,’ he said, over eighty years later.


c. To cover (a distance).

1857 Hughes Tom Brown i. i, You can get over a couple of thousand miles of ground for three pound ten. 1883 Fenn Middy & Ensign xxxii. 193 Ten miles were got over that evening.


d. To finish, accomplish (an action); to get through with, have done with.

1872 Black Adv. Phaeton xxvii, The inn‥had clearly got over its day's labour. 1889 A. V. Carr Marg. Maliphant II. xxiv. 191, I had got over my visit quite safely.


e. To while away, succeed in passing (time). (Cf. 48c.)

1890 Temple Bar XC. 147 He never is quite clear afterwards how he gets over the hours that intervene.


f. slang. To take advantage of, circumvent.

1840 H. Cockton Life Valentine Vox viii. 49 And as the old boy's not always exactly wide awake, he's to be got over just in the same way. 1862 Temple Bar VI. 418 If any possible swindle had been intended, they had not got over me. 1891 F. W. Robinson Her Love & His Life II. iv. ix. 210 You'll have to get up early to get over me.


g. to get over the footlights = to get across (see across B. 2b). U.S.

1915 Munsey's Mag. Aug. 515/1 Shaw was generally considered altogether too wild to stand a chance of getting over the footlights.


47. get round ——. (Cf. 75.) a. To circumvent, get the better of, cajole.

1849 G. F. Ruxton Life in Far West 106 One from the Land of Cakes‥sought to ‘get round’ (in trade) a right ‘smart’ Yankee, but couldn't ‘shine’. 1885 F. Anstey Tinted Venus 40, I must‥ask her for the ring, very polite and civil, and try if I can't get round her that way. 1890 Harper's Mag. Nov. 963/2 She probably managed to get round him in various ways.


b. To evade.

1896 Westm. Gaz. 24 July 1/2 With every change in the rules comes a fresh ingenuity in getting round them.


48. get through ——. (Cf. 76.) a. To reach the end of, bring to a conclusion, accomplish (a task, etc.).

1661 Marvell Corr. Wks. 1872–5 II. 76 We are not yet got through the Bill of Corporations to have it ingrosd. 1850 Tait's Mag. XVII. 463/2 He managed to get through four good meals. 1860 Geo. Eliot Mill on Fl. ii. i, He got through his supines without mistake. 1889 J. Masterman Scotts of Bestminster I. vi. 194 He therefore got through his business as quickly as he could.


b. Of legislative measures: to be passed by (Parliament, the Commons or Lords). Also, to get through the court: to receive one's ‘discharge’ as a bankrupt.

1855 Costello Stor. Screen 82 As to the Court, if you did get through it‥you'd be worse off when you came out than when you went in. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 168 A new Reform Bill had got through the Commons by more than a hundred majority.


c. To succeed in passing (time); esp. to find occupation for (a period of time), so as to escape ennui. (Cf. 46e.)

1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. I. 17 (The Monk), Those who‥have no other plan in life, but to get through it in sloth and ignorance. 1847–9 Helps Friends in C. (1851) II. 7 How do you get through the day? 1890 Temple Bar Oct. 145 He gets through the morning tolerably well with letter-writing.


49. a. get to ——. (Cf. 77.) To begin, settle down to.

1861 Hughes Tom Brown at Oxf. Introd., Tom was‥beginning to feel that it was high time for him to be getting to regular work again. 1889 F. C. Philips Yng. Ainslie's Courtship II. v. 52 You and I will get to business with due solemnity.


b. To bribe. U.S. slang.

1927 Dialect Notes V. 447 Get to one, to bribe. 1930 E. D. Sullivan Chicago Surrenders i. 10 Gangsters can't operate on a satisfactory scale anywhere until they have ‘got to someone’.


c. To worry, depress, or obsess; = sense 44g above. U.S. slang.

1961 in Webster. 1968 New Yorker 28 Dec. 42/2 It depresses me, but I don't let it get to me. Ibid., You can't excuse yourself that way, any more than you can let drunks and such get to you.


d. To get across to (an audience, etc.) (see across B. 2b). U.S. colloq.

1968 Globe & Mail (Toronto) 13 Jan. 28/6 They didn't even realize that they were hearing a great man in Teagarden‥even though we always got to them by the end of the evening.


50. get under ——. Naut. to get under sail: to set sail. to get under way: to begin to move.

1748 Anson's Voy. ii. vii. 207 We got under sail from the road of Paita‥about midnight. 1772–84 Cook Voy. (1790) V. 186 In the mean time the ships were got under way. 1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 42 The sails were instantly set, and the ship got under-way.


51. get upon ——. (Cf. get on, 44.) a. To assume a position upon; to rise to (one's feet); to mount (a horse, etc.).

1581 G. Pettie Guazzo's Civ. Conv. i. (1586) 12 All beastes so soone as they are delivered from their dam get upon their feete, and are able to stand a high alone. 1720 Mrs. Manley Power of Love I. 123 With much Difficulty he got upon his Knees. 1826 in Cobbett Rur. Rides (1885) II. 270 Getting upon a good strong horse, and riding about the country, has no merit in it.


b. To begin or proceed to talk of.

1852 H. Rogers Ecl. Faith (1853) 38 If you find us getting upon these topics, join us.


52. get within ——. Obs. a. To succeed in coming within the defences of (an adversary).

1580 Sidney Arcadia ii. (1590) 211b, I had in a short space gotten within him, and (giuing him a sound blowe) sent him to feede fishes. 1590 Shakes. Com. Err. v. i. 34 Some get within him, take his sword away. 1659 B. Harris Parival's Iron Age 279 Got within shot of the enemy, who fearing that by degrees the English Fleet would get within them; set up their sailes [etc.].


b. To succeed in deceiving, or in winning confidence with (a person).

1640 Sanderson Serm. I. 303 By this very means he got within our grandmother Eve. 1660 Trial Regic. 154, I should so much sympathize with him, to get within him to know his intentions.


VII. With adverbs.


53. get aboard. (See aboard.) a. trans. (sense 27).

1590 Shakes. Com. Err. iv. iv. 162 Therefore away, to get our stuffe aboord. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 40 We had got a great deal of Water and Wood aboard.


b. intr. (sense 31).

1611 Shakes. Wint. T. iii. iii. 7 Go get a-boord, Looke to thy barke. 1697 W. Dampier Voy. I. 116 They knew not how to get aboard. 1780 Coxe Russ. Disc. 58 They had no sooner got aboard than a violent gale of wind‥broke the cable. 1849 [see aboard A. 1b].


54. get about. a. intr. To make one's way about, go from place to place: also, to begin to walk (after an accident, illness, etc.).

1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. vi, You're getting well‥But you'll get about now directly, won't you? 1889 F. C. Philips Yng. Ainslie's Courtship I. xiii. 171 Not even a cab can get about in December for the snow. 1890 Sat. Rev. 1 Nov. 510/1 Mr. Hare might offer more help as to the means of getting about.


b. Of rumours, reports, etc.: To be circulated, become generally known, to obtain currency.

1816 Jane Austen Emma III. xii. 219 Mr. Weston‥did not conceive‥that it would be of any consequence; for ‘such things‥always got about’. 1848 J. H. Newman Loss & Gain 244 When the report got about, Sheffield said that he was not surprised at it. 1889 F. C. Philips Yng. Ainslie's Courtship II. i. 8 Paine's ‘Age of Reason’, for instance, gets about. 1890 F. Barrett Betw. Life & Death III. l. 298 The rumour‥had got about that the timber was not his.


55. get abroad.a. refl. (See sense 27b, and abroad 3.) Obs.

1568 Grafton Chron. II. 107 He gate him abroade and prated thereof at large.


b. trans. (See quot.) Obs.

1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., To get a Thing abroad, to publish it.


c. intr. Of rumours, etc.: To become current.

1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., When such Things get abroad. 1825 T. Jefferson Autobiog. Wks. 1859 I. 32 Should the idea get abroad‥it will damp the minds of the people. 1849 Macaulay Hist. Eng. viii. II. 327 As soon as the questions got abroad, a form of answer‥was circulated all over the kingdom. 1885 Manch. Exam. 6 Nov. 5/2 A suspicion has got abroad that they are meditating a reimposition of the tax on corn.


56. get across. See across A. 4 and B. 2b.

1913, etc. [see across B. 2b]. 1923 U. L. Silberrad Lett. J. Armiter vi. 148 Sorry—my fault—one fails to get across. 1928 Observer 1 Apr. 6 His verse‥in spite of all the efforts of his friends and admirers‥has not really ‘got across’ eleven years after his death. Ibid. 17 June 8 Something, somehow, fails to get across. For it cannot be denied that the actual story‥is a little slow. 1930 Times 24 Mar. 15/5 He can ‘get his words across’ as Gilbert intended.


57. get again. trans. To recover, obtain a second time.

a1300 Cursor M. 8677 Bot moght i neuer gete hider-til, Mi child a-gain. 1362 Langl. P. Pl. A. vi. 106 Thus maihtou leosen his loue‥Bote gete hit aȝeyn bi grace. c1400 Destr. Troy 5899 Then the grekes agayne getou þere hertes, And myche comford kaght of his come þen. c1430 Pilgr. Lyf Manhode iv. lxiii. (1869) 206 Þe flesh shal first be roten, and newe geten ayen at þe general assemblee. 1548 Hall Chron., Edw. IV, 218b, It was to her declared, how that kyng Edward had gotten again the garland. 1678 Bunyan Pilgr. i. 47 When he had gotten his Roll again.


58. get ahead. intr. To make progress, meet with success. to get ahead of: to clear oneself from (a debt).

1807 Southey in Robberds Mem. W. Taylor II. 190, I have better hopes than I ever yet had of getting ahead. 1851 Mayhew Lond. Lab. I. 380 There are many who have incurred a tally debt, and have never been able to ‘get a-head of it’, but have been kept poor by it all their lives.


59. get along. a. intr. (See sense 31 and along.)

1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. I. 19 (The Monk), I have only just set out upon my travels; and shall learn better manners as I get along. 1889 C. L. Pirkis At Moment Vict. III. x. 158 She gets along faster in the wind than Havelock.


b. To succeed, find no insurmountable difficulties; to get on, fare (well, ill); to manage, esp. without something. (Cf. get on, 71 g, h.)

1830 [see along adv. 2a]. 1837 H. Martineau Soc. Amer. II. 204 But there is no bringing glass over a corduroy‥road; and those who have no other highways must ‘get along’ with such windows as it may please the weather‥to leave them. 1850 [see along adv. 2]. 1868 Dickens Lett. (1880) II. 365 Some of these halls turn out to be smaller than represented, but I have no doubt, to use an American expression, that we shall ‘get along’. 1868 G. Duff Pol. Surv. 145 You are wanted there, and we can get along without you! 1890 Cornh. Mag. Oct. 376 If one's soul passes out of one's reach, one has to get along without it.


c. To agree, act, or live harmoniously together; also, to get along well with (cf. 71i).

1875 B. L. Farjeon Love's Vict. xi, You and Mr. Barton do not seem to get along well together. 1885 Harper's Mag. Mar. 501/2 If they wished to get along well with him they must let him have his own way.


d. imp. get along with you = go away; also fig. let be, have done, be quiet. colloq.

1837 Dickens Pickw. xiv. 1840 —— Barn. Rudge xxii, Leave me. Get along with you.


60. get around. a. to get around to = to get round to (sense 75c).

1887 M. E. Wilkins Humble Romance 35 There has been a good many things I haven't got around to. 1936, 1952 [see around adv. 4].


b. To go round; to circulate; spec. to go out a great deal; to visit many places. Chiefly U.S.

1928 Amer. Speech III. 219 Get around, to‥have many desirable dates. ‘Mary Jane sure did get around last semester.’ 1951 M. McLuhan Mech. Bride 60/2 The news got around fast. 1959 Times Lit. Suppl. 20 Mar. 159/3 Still, Mr. Donnelly has got around.‥ He makes his way to places like Tashkent, Samarkand and Alma Ata.


61. get away. a. intr. To escape, succeed in departing. Also (usu. with a negative), to disregard or escape from (a fact, implication, etc.). Also, in Hunting and Racing: to start.

a1300 Cursor M. 7902 In batail sua he suld be sette, þat he awai suld neuer gette. 1375 Barbour Bruce xiv. 223 The lordis war gottin all avay. 1535 Coverdale Job i. 17 The Caldees‥haue‥slayne the seruauntes with the swearde: and I only am gotten awaye, to tell the. 1638 F. Junius Paint. of Ancients 131 David‥had leisure enough to get away whilest the Kings messengers were so deceived. 1707 Curios. in Husb. & Gard. 15 They escap'd from the City, as from a Prison, and got away into the Country. 1818 Cobbett Pol. Reg. XXXIII. 13 He came out of the Tower, or, rather, got away out of it somehow or other. 1875 G. J. Whyte-Melville Riding Recoll. ii, Exhaust, therefore, all your knowledge of woodcraft to get away on good terms with the hounds. 1885 F. Anstey Tinted Venus 56 All our party was glad to get away. 1912 T. Dreiser Financier lvii. 601 A jail is a jail; and there is no getting away from that. 1930 A. Christie Murder at Vicarage xi. 84 It's his pistol—you can't get away from that.


b. imp. Also as a colloq. expression of astonishment or incredulity = ‘go on’, you don't say (so). = go away, be off. Also get away with you = 59d.

1796 Jane Austen Pride & Prej. xlix, Take whatever you like, and get away. 1848 Thackeray Van. Fair xxii. 190 ‘Don't trifle with her affections, you Don Juan!’ ‘Get away,’ said Jos Sedley, quite pleased. 1960 H. Pinter Dumb Waiter 124 Ben. The lorry started and ran over him. Gus. Go on! Ben. That's what it says here. Gus. Get away. 1969 ‘D. Cory’ Night Hawk 16 ‘Do you speak Spanish?’ ‘Of course I do. I am Spanish.’ ‘Get away.’ ‘I am. I can prove it.’


c. to get away with: (U.S. slang) to get the better of, to beat in a contest. Also (colloq., orig. U.S.), to carry off successfully; to succeed in winning or stealing; to do (something) with impunity; freq. in phr. to get away with it: to succeed in what one tries; to act without being detected or punished; so to get away with murder: to get away with anything; to do whatever one wishes.

1878 J. H. Beadle Western Wilds ii. 41 More'n once the robbers would tackle some gritty man that was handy with his ‘barkers’, an' he'd get away with two or three of 'em. 1886 Boston Jrnl. 18 Dec. 2/4 They got away with the pennant three successive seasons. 1887 A. A. Hayes Jesuit's Ring 227 The boys got away with the‥road agents. 1892 Congress. Rec. 13 Dec. 122/2 [These gentlemen] will have to be content with the pitiful $240,000 that they have already ‘got away with’. 1908 Dialect Notes III. 314 You can't get away with me. 1912 Maclean's Mag. Oct. 56/2 In the Elizabethan days you could assault the watch‥and have a jolly set-to with the blades in any convenient angle of a wall and ‘get away with it’. 1921 Collier's 26 Mar. 25/1 The Kid loved her enough for her to get away with murder—which he undoubtedly did. 1923 A. Huxley Antic Hay x. 145 He had no sense of time or of order. But he got away with it, as he liked to say. 1926 Amer. Speech I. 292/2 This stable has been getting away with murder. 1939 Chatelaine Sept. 19/2 Usually she's young enough and amusing enough to ‘get away with murder’. 1945 E. Waugh Brideshead Revisited 12 He would sometimes say of the ways of the Army in pay and supply and the use of ‘man-hours’: ‘They couldn't get away with that in business.’ 1958 Times Oct. 3/3 A film set in Ireland and relying upon whimsical comedy can get away, if not with murder, at least with weaknesses. 1967 J. Caird Murder Scholastic viii. 98 George gets away with murder.‥ I mean, he does things in his own way. 1968 Listener 8 Aug. 164/3 Nobody can quite believe that Mr Dubcek is being allowed to get away with it.


d. trans. and refl. (See sense 27 and away.) spec. in Cricket. To hit (the ball) past the fieldsman, so as to make a run or runs; also with the bowler as object.

c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, George 883 Men‥gat away prywely of his relykis a party. c1400 Destr. Troy 11765 The kyng‥hade hit goten, Paladian the pure god, pertly away. c1430 Syr Tryam. 479 Ther myght no man gete hym [greyhound] away. 1585 T. Washington tr. Nicholay's Voy. i. xx. 25b, There was no remedy to get them [prisoners] away, but by great presents. 1640 tr. Verdere's Rom. Rom. iii. 27 Taking a little courage to her, she got her speedily away. 1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., He has got away my Customers‥She got away the best Things in the House, elle a soustrait [etc.]. 1868 Bailey's Mag. July 128 The two first-named‥exhibited splendid defence; but they could not get the ball away. 1903 C. F. Wood in H. G. Hutchinson Cricket xii. 379 Scoring is out of the question. You may stop the ball as long as your patience lasts, but you can't get it away. 1955 Times 12 May 4/4 Phillips was one of five freshmen to bowl. He is tall and an awkward man to get away by reason of his length.


e. trans. To shake off, get rid of (a cold).

1676 Lady Chaworth in 12th Rep. Hist. MSS. Comm. App. v. 34 The season continues so seveere I cannot get away my ill cold nor goe out of the house.


f. intr. To begin; to start quickly; esp. of a plant, to start growing vigorously or well.

1930 Forestry IV. 113 If the oak got away quickly it would soon be out of reach of the weeds. 1933 Jrnl. R. Hort. Soc. LVIII. 99 You wish to ensure the roots getting away quickly into the new soil. 1950 N.Z. Jrnl. Agric. Oct. 295/1 There would be danger of fires getting away on sunny faces when the vegetation was very dry. 1957 Jrnl. R. Hort. Soc. LXXXII. 370 If the ground is broken into rubble the roots can get away and the plant will flourish. 1960 F. C. Stern Chalk Garden xv. 163 It is advisable to put them in as small plants as they get away much quicker than large plants. 1967 R. Mackay House & Day 86 ‘The trees are quite big.’‥‘Yes. They've got away well now.’


62. get back. a. intr. To effect a return. Also refl.

1605 Shakes. Ant. & Cl. iii. xiii. 139 Get thee backe to Cæsar. 1664 Pepys Diary 22 Nov., They have no victuals to keep them out, and it is likely they will be frozen before they can get back. 1707 Curios. in Husb. & Gard. 22 If any Disgrace‥drive any one away, he is never at rest till he get back again. a1847 Mrs. Sherwood Lady of Manor I. iv. 99 Perhaps you hoped I was got back to England. 1862 Temple Bar V. 315 Get you back to your inn, good youth. 1889 Univ. Rev. Nov. 360 It was an attempt on the artist's part to get back to nature.


b. trans. To recover. (Cf. get again, 57.) to get one's own back: to revenge oneself; to get even with someone.

1808 ‘Cervantes Hogg’ Miss-led General 161 Another considerable estate‥was rattled away in one night; but the good old lord contrived to get it back. 1872 Freeman Gen. Sketch xiii. §7 (1874) 245 Venice got back nearly all that she had lost. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 189 Austria got back its hold on Italy. 1910 J. Driscoll Ringcraft 17 He wanted to get his own back, and‥he fancied he saw his chance. 1914 G. B. Shaw Pygmalion iv, Higgins.‥ You have wounded me to the heart. Liza.‥ I'm glad. I've got a little of my own back. 1920 ‘Ixion’ Motor Cycle Remin. 124 Whenever he met me I was able to get my own back. 1922 Westm. Gaz. 28 Nov., Busby said that he did it to ‘get his own back’.


c. to get back at (or on): to retort or retaliate upon. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

1888 Chicago Inter-Ocean (Farmer), The open letter writers are getting back at Sam for his fondness for tobacco. 1907 Daily Chron. 17 Oct. 3/3 You cannot afford to be rude to a journalist. Some day he will get back on you. 1923 Wodehouse Inimitable Jeeves ix. 90 A lesser man might easily have snatched at the chance of getting back at me a bit by loosing Cyril into by bedchamber. 1972 Guardian 11 Feb. 1/6 For most of question time‥Mr Thorpe tried to get back at the‥Prime Minister.


63. get before. intr. (See 31 and before.)

1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 7 The Boat-men‥forbearing ever and anon to row, purposely to let the Amabssadors get before.


64. get by. intr. To be successful in escaping or evading something; to succeed, get along, ‘manage’; to pass muster, be acceptable; to get away with. colloq. (orig. U.S.)

1908 J. M. Sullivan Crim. Slang 12 Getting by, living without doing any hard work. 1918 in Wine, Women & War (1926) 24 Absorbing what's useful in foreign methods‥just getting by, myself.‥ Too damned technical. 1922 H. Crane Let. 2 Apr. (1965) 83 It has enough in it to ‘get by’ on the first reading with a rather pleasing effect. 1926 S.P.E. Tract xxiv. 122 That chap could get by with murder. 1939 Wodehouse Uncle Fred in Springtime i. 12 Polly thinks I can get by all right. 1952 A. Wilson Hemlock & After i. i. 20 Our old bus will get by with a new engine. 1968 Listener 14 Nov. 663/3 The pseudo-metaphysical jargon that gets by as art criticism today.


65. get down. a. intr. (See sense 31 and down.) Also refl.

1581 G. Pettie Guazzo's Civ. Conv. i. (1586) 28b, Then they tell the wall, and the waie, whereby her lover got downe. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 43 The day being come‥he gets down‥leaving his dead Companion upon the Tree. 1757 Foote Author Prol., Sirrah! get down, and let your father ride. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown i. iv, Then one of the biggest [boys] gets down [from the coach] and begs his pardon. 1865 Dickens Mut. Fr. i. vi, Bob, get ye down to your supper. 1887 Westm. Rev. June 361 We have now got down to the fifteenth century.


b. trans. (See sense 27 and down.)

15‥ Mylner of Abynton 382 in Hazl. E.E.P. III. 114 Stout strokes was them betweene; The milner was the more keene, And gat the clarke downe. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 142 If, through weaknesse‥he be not able to get down the bread. 1669 Sturmy Mariner's Mag. i. 17 Shall we get down our Topmasts? 1712 Arbuthnot John Bull iii. ii, Even when Master had got her down, she would scratch and bite like a tiger. 1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §266 We returned to the buss about noon to get down our moorings. 1843 Macaulay Lays Anc. Rome, Virginia 271 Small chance was his to rise again, if once they got him down.


c. to get down on (someone): to develop a dislike for or grudge against; to be hostile or oppressive to. U.S. colloq.

1875 ‘M. Quad’ Quad's Odds 381 The adult male population of the village got down on John Anderson Tompkins. 1898 E. N. Westcott David Harum 105 Dave got down on him fer some little thing or other.


d. intr. To settle down to (something); to turn one's attention to; freq. in phr. to get down to it: to get started; to begin work seriously or energetically. See also to get down to brass tacks (brass n. 5b), to get down to cases (case n.2 1d).

1892 ‘Mark Twain’ Amer. Claimant xiv. 108 You've got to get right down to it and amuse your mind. 1924 Sunday Times 30 Mar. 6/2 The Bishop of Beauvais, the Earl of Warwick, and Chaplain de Stogumber assemble round a table and ‘get down to it’. 1930 J. B. Priestley Angel Pavement viii. 413 Then come back here, bring your notebook, and we'll get down to it. 1957 K. M. Kenyon Digging up Jericho 39 The first stages of a dig‥start long before one actually gets down to excavating.


e. trans. To depress or weary (someone). Cf. down adv. 18.

1930 C. V. Grimmett Getting Wickets v. 115 There is quite enough to worry about on the field without allowing the troubles of the game to ‘get you down’ when you leave it. 1932 N. Coward Cavalcade iii. ii. 137 Blues, Twentieth Century Blues, are getting me down. 1953 ‘N. Shute’ In Wet v. 171 It's just being cooped up in the office gets you down a bit.


66. get forth. intr. (See sense 31 and forth.)

c1475 Rauf Coilȝear 603 He saw the King was engreuit, and gat furth glaid. 1639 tr. Du Bosq's Compl. Woman 30 This Musing is a Maze, where one easily looseth himselfe, and whence without great difficulty he gets not forth. 1796 Macneill Will & Jean v. viii, Will got forth; On a cart, or in a waggon, Hirplin aye towards the north.


67. get forward. (See senses 27 and 31, and forward.) a. intr.

1583 Hollyband Campo di Fior 281 Get forward, for I will come after you a foote. 1651 Life Father Sarpi (1676) 10 He was already gotten so forward in all the Sciences, that [etc.]. 1796 Coleridge Watchman No. 2 ⁋5 They who act up to my precepts, will‥be precluded from all the customary means of getting forward in the world. 1815 Chalmer in Life (1851) II. 8, I‥got forward in the coach with Mr. Paul. 1857 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. XVIII. i. 19 The mares are indulged a little as they get forward with foal.


b. trans.

1712 W. Rogers Voy. 5 We lengthen'd our Mizen-Mast‥got our Fore-Mast forward.


68. get in. a. intr. (See sense 31 and in.)

a1533 Ld. Berners Huon lix. 206 He‥went toward the posterne the whiche, with muche payne, they gatte in there at. ?a1550 Freiris Berwik 94 in Dunbar's Poems (1893) 288 Our ȝettis ar closit that we may nocht in gett. 1613 Shakes. Hen. VIII, v. iv. 18 Port. How got they in? Man. Alas I know not, how gets the Tide in. a1691 Boyle Hist. Air (1692) 84 Although the bar of Porta Nova proved more‥dangerous than we were informed; yet our ship got safe in thither. 1782 Cowper Gilpin 38 Three doors off the chaise was stayed, Where they did all get in. 1803 J. Porter Thaddeus xiv. (1831) 129 He was in hopes to have gotten in as he had stolen out. 1850 Tait's Mag. XVII. 722/2 The chaise having arrived‥Trotter got in.


b. To be elected or chosen to represent a constituency in parliament, etc.

1700 J. Verney Let. 10 Nov. in M. M. Verney Verney Lett. (1930) I. x. 159 The Coll. may carry it for the County, & Sir T. Lee get in at Aylesbury. 1861 Temple Bar II. 395 [He] is trying to get in for Wylminstre at the next election.


c. In Falconry. (See quots.)

1879 Encycl. Brit. IX. 7 To go up to a hawk when she has killed her quarry is to ‘get in’. 1891 Harting Bibl. Accipitr. 223 Get in, to reach the hawk as soon as she has killed.


d. trans. (See sense 27 and in.). spec. To bring in or buy; to get a stock of.

1593 Shakes. 3 Hen. VI, iv. vii. 25 When the Fox hath once got in his Nose, Hee'le soone finde meanes to make the Body follow. 1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §158 In getting in the bridle cable by means of its buoys. 1869 Mrs. H. Wood Roland Yorke II. xx. 125 She [sc. the landlady] gets things in for us, and wants to be paid for them. 1893 Chambers's Jrnl. 1 July 414/2, I fetched water, got in sticks, cleaned boots. 1907 R. Brooke Let. July (1968) 92 The Mrs Chaffey, the lady who will land us, wanted to know what food to get in. 1932 A. J. Worrall Eng. Idioms ix. 72 Most shopkeepers are getting in their Christmas goods. 1962 Oxford Mail 22 June 4/7 So long as I can earn enough to pay the rent and get in the odd bottle, I'm happy.


e. To gather in, secure (harvest produce).

1628 Earle Microcosm., Country Fellow (Arb.) 50 For Death hee is neuer troubled‥if hee get in but his Haruest before. 1699 Poor Man's Plea 7 In all these Three Counties the Crop was good, and the Corn well got in. 1762 Foote Orators i. Wks. 1799 I. 195 It would be difficult‥to get in even our harvests, without the aid of hands‥from Ireland. 1855 Costello Stor. Screen 61 A summons to assist in getting in the vintage‥wholly prevented him. 1889 A. V. Carr Marg. Maliphant II. xxi. 107 We had to get the hay in.


f. To collect, gather (contributions of money, esp. sums due).

1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii, To get in his Debts, se faire payer. 1754 J. Hill (title) The Young Secretary's Guide‥with a true method every honest dealer should take to get in what is owing to him. 1884 ‘C. Power’ [Grant Allen] Philistia I. viii. 217 The poor landlords can't get in their rents. 1886 Law Times LXXX. 132/1 Some of the assets had been got in by the receiver, and had never come to her hands at all.


g. Printing. To set close (see quot.).

1676 Moxon Print Lett. 10 If‥you are pinched for room, you may leave no Space between Letter and Letter; and then one or two Spaces between a Word will serve. This by Printers is called Getting in, or Setting close.


h. To sow, plant (seed).

1843 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. IV. ii. 566, I find it [a roller]‥useful in getting-in my spring corn, when the ground is dry and rough. 1853 Ibid. XIV. i. 192 April is the usual time for getting in the seed.


i. To yoke, harness (horses, etc.); to bring or drive (cattle) into the stock-yard.

1887 Rider Haggard Jess xxii, I will tell the boy to get your horses in. 1890 Boldrewood Col. Reformer (1891) 217 A portion of the herd he thought he could get in.


j. To succeed in doing certain work (esp. within a specified time).

1838 Mrs. Gaskell Lett. 17 July (1966) 19, I had engaged a girl‥to help in all the extra work, & meant to get all sorts of things in. 1890 Jrnl. Educ. 1 Sept. 479/1 We are not bound to get in a certain period [of history] by a certain date.


k. To succeed in delivering (a blow).

1891 Chamb. Jrnl. 21 Nov. 750/1 The youngster got in a nasty blow, drawing streams of blood from his opponent's face.


l. to get one's hand in: to become skilful by practice (see hand 53). to get in a word (edgeways): to succeed in saying something in a pause of another's talk (see also edgeways).

1832 H. Martineau Life in Wilds vi. 78 It was some time before she got her hand in, as we say. 1835 H. C. Robinson Diary 12 Nov. (1967) 143 Rogers‥said in his sneering way: ‘Can Mrs. Masquerier get in a word?’ 1863 Kingsley Water Bab. vii, She was running on, while Tom tried to get in a word edgeways. 1888 Lady D. Hardy Dang. Exper. II. xi. 222 You have given me no time to get in a word. 1891 T. Hardy Tess ii. xv, ‘I'll begin milking now, to get my hand in’, said Tess.


m. to get in bad (or wrong): to incur dislike; to get into trouble; also trans., to bring (someone) into disfavour; to get (someone) into trouble; cf. bad B. 1c; so to get in good. Freq. const. with. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

1910 O. Johnson Varmint xi. 152 Dink, you're getting in wrong again. 1913 Dialect Notes IV. i. 26 Get in bad, to make a mistake or a false move. 1920 F. Scott Fitzgerald This Side of Paradise (1921) i. iv. 139 People are beginning to think he's odd.‥ He certainly is getting in wrong. 1921 S. Ford Inez & Trilby May iii. 56 So much prattle about a rich uncle who couldn't be produced was bound to get us in wrong sooner or later. 1928 Observer 19 Feb. 16/2 Young Woodley‥prefers poetry to cricket. That, of course, ‘gets him in bad’ with his house-master. 1928 Sunday Dispatch 22 July 22/3 It will be he who will get in bad with the fans. 1931 Kansas City Star 7 Nov., The husband, jumping at a chance to ‘get in good’ came home from work the next day with a bundle of books. 1966 Listener 27 Oct. 622/2 The speech he made in Chicago which got him in bad with the organizers of Negro protest marches.


69. get in with.a. trans. To bring (a person) into favour with.

1628 Earle Microcosm., Yng. Rawe Preacher (Arb.) 23 His fashion and demure Habit gets him in with some Town-precision, and maks him a Guest on Fryday nights.


b. intr. To become familiar with, attain to intimacy or favour with.

1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., To get in with one, to scrue himself into his Friendship. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 215 He so contrived his Business as to get in with our Men. 1705 Hearne Collect. 24 Aug. (O.H.S.) I. 34 He is got in with the Whigs. 1744 S. Fielding David Simple II. 284, I got in with a Set of Sharpers, and‥was admitted to share some Part of the Booty. 1887 Old Man's Favour II. iii. iii. 186, I couldn't get in with him at all;‥he's tremendously reserved.


c. Naut. To come close up to.

1671 Narborough Jrnl. in Acc. Sev. Late Voy. (1711) 177 At 6 at night we got in with the Land. 1748 Anson's Voy. iii. i. 302 We were extremely impatient to get in with the nearest Island. 1797 Sir J. Jervis 15 Feb. in Nicolas Disp. Nelson (1845) II. 333, I was fortunate in getting in with the Enemy's Fleet before it had time to connect. 1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 67 The wind falling, and veering to the westward, we tacked, to get in with the ice.


70. get off. a. intr. (See sense 31 and off.) To escape, get away; to start on a journey, or in a race. Also, to succeed in falling asleep; to fall asleep. Cf. sense 70m. to get off to sleep: to succeed in falling asleep. to get off from, †get off of = ‘to get off’ (43a, c).

1607 Shakes. Cor. ii. i. 141 They fought together, but Auffidius got off. 1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. 11, To get off from his Horse, descendre de Cheval. 1693 Mem. Cnt. Teckely iv. 61 The Right Wing of the Christian Army, having‥abandoned its attack‥gave opportunity to the Janizaries‥to get off on this side. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. iii. 146 The crazy condition of the ship‥prevented her from getting off to sea. 1749 Dodwell Free Answer 109, I was wondering‥how he would get off of this difficulty. 1891 Cassell's Fam. Mag. Mar. 212/1, I find I can get off to sleep by trying to count up to 100. 1897 A. Morrison Dorrington Deed-box i, We‥got off comfortably by the ten o'clock train from Euston. 1922 V. Woolf Jacob's Room i. 17, I thought he'd never get off—such a hurricane. 1934 L. A. G. Strong Corporal Tune iii. iv. 267 If you find you can't get off tonight‥don't lie awake. Ring your bell, and ask sister to give you my ‘A’ drink. 1969 A. Laski Dominant Fifth v. 182 The doctor gave me some very good sleeping-pills and said I must take one every evening, and so I did, though not until I'm sure Tess has got off.


b. To escape from punishment, defeat, etc., either entirely or with or for a specified loss or penalty; to be acquitted in a criminal trial.

1640 tr. Verdere's Rom. Rom. i. 81 The Christians got off with the losse of two thousand men. Ibid. i. 146 The Christians having got off for seventy two thousand horse, and two and twenty thousand of their infantry. 1690 Bury in W. Nicholls Answ. Naked Gospel (1691) B4b, But perhaps the Trinitarians will not so easily get off here. 1724 De Foe Mem. Cavalier (1840) 271 He got off for 4000l. 1759 Dilworth Pope 98 By this artful compliment Mr. Pope got off. 1840 Dickens Barn. Rudge II. xv, He had got off very well with a reprimand. 1881 Mrs. E. Lynn Linton My Love III. iv. 79 The Pennefathers got off with fewer rebukes than usual. 1889 Doyle M. Clarke xxxvi. 408 The leaders of the insurrection got off much more lightly than their followers.


c. to get off with. To get rid of, have done with Obs.

1719 De Foe Crusoe ii. vi, I thought to have gotten off with my young priest by telling him [etc.].


d. trans. (See sense 27 and off.)

1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 35 To get off our Ship from among those Rocks. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 42 Two men waiting‥by the Shore, for a Portuguese Canoe to get 'em off. 1731 Gentl. Mag. I. 32/2 The Samuel‥ran ashore‥but 'twas thought might be got off.


e. To remove, take off.

1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 314 This colour will not be got off in fifteen dayes, though they wash their hands several times a day. 1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., To get his Coat off, tirer son Justaucorps. 1702 Act 1 Anne Stat. ii. c. 19. [22.] §2 If any Person or Persons‥shall‥fraudulently cut, tear, or get off any Mark or Stamp from any Piece of Vellum [etc.].


f. To deliver (a person) from punishment, or procure a modified penalty for.

1725 De Foe Voy. round World (1840) 43, I will see and get you off if I can. 1862 Temple Bar V. 452 He promised to get my master off on payment of a fine. 1885 Times 18 May 5 Riel's friends were powerful enough to get him off with five years' banishment.


g. To learn, commit to memory. Also to get off by heart (cf. sense 8).

1709 Hearne Collect. (O.H.S.) II. 308 He would always make them set about his own [Grammar], and spend time in getting it off intirely. 1861 Temple Bar III. 141 Read the Times‥and get off by heart that portion‥devoted to the news of the money-market. 1883 Gilmour Mongols xvii. 201 Our religious system has no set form of liturgy to be got off by heart and repeated.


h. To ‘get off one's hands’; to find sale for (goods); colloq. to get (one's daughters) married. Also intr., to get married or engaged to be married.

1710 [see off adv. 3b]. 1724 Swift Drapier's Lett. i. (1730) 13 Wood‥to get them [his Half-Pence] off, offered an Hundred Pounds in his Coin for Seventy or Eighty in Silver. 1801 M. Edgeworth Belinda I. ii. 41 There's no less than six of her nieces, whom she has got off within these four winters—Not one of 'em now, that has not made a catch-match. 1868 F. C. Burnand Hit & ‘Miss’ i. 14 You should have got her off as she's a daughter—Why, noblemen in numbers must have sought her. 1915 B. Ruck Courtship of Rosamond Fayre iii, ‘Miss Urquhart's got off herself.’ ‘She has and she hasn't. Her chap's always away.’ 1923 E. Bowen Encounters 116 It had been difficult to get poor Cicely off.


i. To succeed in uttering (esp. a joke).

1849 Yale Lit. Mag. XIV. 187 There is the writing of one who tried to ‘get off’, as the boys say, something comic on every occasion. 1858 J. G. Holland Titcomb's Lett. to Yng. Men vii. (1873) 58 Have you a good set of teeth, which you are willing to show whenever the wit of the company gets off a good thing? 1886 K. S. Macquoid Sir J. Appleby II. vi. 83 If [he] had to speak at any public occasion, he could never get a sentence off without hesitation. 1891 Chamb. Jrnl. 618/1 They would‥get off their jokes on him and insult him.


j. where one gets off: the point beyond which one is not competent, entitled, or required to go; esp. in phr. to tell (someone) where he gets (or to get) off: to rebuke for presumption or interference; to ‘tell off’. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

1900 Ade More Fables 163 He said he was a Gentleman, and that no Cheap Skate in a Plug Hat could tell him where to Get Off. 1922 S. Lewis Babbitt vii. 93 Once in a while I got to assert my authority, and…I told him just exactly where he got off. 1932 A. J. Worrall Eng. Idioms 73, I told him where he got off. 1953 J. Trench Docken Dead vi. 90 I'm sure you knew how to deal with the police. Told them where they got off, I expect. 1963 D. Lessing Man & Two Women 128 If just for once she told us where to get off.


k. intr. To become acquainted or friendly with (one of the opposite sex), esp. with amorous intentions. colloq.

1915 [see click v.1 1d]. 1925 Fraser & Gibbons Soldier & Sailor Words 104 Get off with, to, to make the acquaintance of or ‘pick up’ with anyone, usually some girl, without the formality of an introduction. 1925 F. Lonsdale Spring Cleaning i. 13 What fun it would be if one of us could get off with him. 1936 Auden Look, Stranger! 35 The lady who admires us, you Have thought you're getting off with too.


l. Of a jazz musician: to improvise skilfully. U.S. slang.

1933 Fortune Aug. 47/1 Returning to Trombonist Brown, he can get off, swing it, sock it, smear it, or go to town (all of which mean syncopate to beat the band). 1955 R. Blesh Shining Trumpets (ed. 3) xii. 289 The present-day solo is esteemed modern and full of ideas in direct proportion to the more unrecognizable it makes the melody. Such ‘getting off’ conceals lack of true invention.


m. trans. To succeed in getting (a child) to go to sleep. colloq. Cf. sense 70a.

1951 N. Mitford Blessing i. iii. 25 Well, I only hope he won't overexcite the poor little fellow. You know what it's like getting him off, evenings. 1968 A. Laski Keeper ii. 23 Gavin's been playing up; teeth; I think she may have just about got him off.


n. Used as an exclamation expressing impatience or incredulity; = sense 61b. colloq.

1958 J. Wain Contenders 29 ‘Get off,’ I said. I should explain that ‘Get off’ is an expression much used in North Staffordshire as an ironic rejoinder to obvious remarks.


o. slang.: (a) orig. U.S., to become intoxicated with drugs; to get ‘high’; (b) to achieve sexual satisfaction; to experience an orgasm; cf. to get one's rocks off s.v. rock n.1 2i; (c) orig. N. Amer., to experience an emotional ‘high’; to enjoy or be ‘turned on’ by something. Also const. on. Cf. sense 70l.

(a) 1969 R. D. Lingeman Drugs from A to Z 82 Get off, to inject heroin. 1980 A. Kukla in Michaels & Ricks State of Lang. 521 Did you get off on that acid you took last night?
(b) 1973 D. Lang Freaks 30 Another time‥Annie got off on her own fingers while describing exactly what it felt like to her ex-husband on the telephone. 1976 N. Thornburg Cutter & Bone ii. 55 And the shrink getting off on it all, sitting there with one hand stuck in his fly.
(c) 1973 Globe & Mail (Toronto) 11 May 43/3 Yeah, there are hockey chicks, girls who get off on jocks. 1973 Rolling Stone 8 Nov. 20/3, I remember buying their album and getting off. 1977 C. McFadden Serial (1978) ii. 10/2 She really got off on weddings. 1977 Time 23 May 51/3, I really get off on dancing. It's a high. 1984 N Mailer Tough Guys don't Dance ii. 29, I could get off on my plans for the day if only the dream that I was in Prison would not persist.


71. get on. a. trans. To put on, don (an article of dress); to place (a kettle, etc.) on the fire.

1597 Shakes. 2 Hen. IV, v. iii. 137 Get on thy Boots, wee'l ride all night. 1605 —— Macb. ii. ii. 70. 1650 Trapp Comm. Gen. xli. 14 And should not we get on our best [raiment], when we are to come before God? 1839 Thirty-six Yrs. Seafaring Life 332 We soon lit a good fire not far from the tent, got the kettle on, had supper. 1891 ‘L. Malet’ Wages of Sin III. vi. i. 63 As the vulgar little boys say, Carr has ‘got 'em all on’ to-night, hasn't he?


b. To put on, succeed in acquiring (speed). Often to get a move on: see move n. 6.

1891 Field 21 Nov. 770/1 Their forwards often got on a good deal of pace, but were never really dangerous.


c. refl. To advance one's own interests.

1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 18 Using men as his tools to get himself on.


d. slang. To lay (a bet) on (a horse). Also intr.

1836 Spirit of Times (N.Y.) 5 Mar. 20/1 Other parties were anxious to ‘get on’ at this price, but could not succeed. 1869 E. Farmer Scrap Bk. (ed. 6) 53 When a ‘sov’ or ‘fiver’ can be got on, We're game to risk it.


e. intr. To advance, move forward; to make haste (in movement).

1768 Sterne Sent. Journ. (1778) I. 131 (Postilion) Then, prithee, get on—get on, my good lad, said I. 1777 Sir M. Hunter Jrnls. (1894) 25 The guns got on so slowly that we did not arrive at Brunswick before ten the next morning. 1891 Leisure Hour Jan. 151/2 Let us get on and lose no time.


f. To advance, make progress (with a work or business). Said also of the work itself. Freq. in phr. to get on with it: to continue with one's affairs; to pursue one's course.

1798 Southey in Life (1849) I. 347 The more the work gets on, the better does it please me. 1805 —— Lett. (1856) I. 328 Don Manuel cannot get on for want of such knowledge and of a book of the roads. 1822 Ibid. III. 353, I am getting on with the ‘Book of the Church’. 1813 T. Moore in Mem. (1853) I. 350, I am more anxious than I can tell you to get on with it [my poem]. 1823 Scoresby Whale Fishery 446 We began to flench; but‥we only got slowly on. 1932 R. Fraser Marriage in Heaven ii. vi. 161 I've always just let people get on with it, especially men, if they didn't like what I said or did. 1955 J. Bingham Paton Street Case v. 91, I started out with some idea of serving the community and bunk like that, and now the community can get on with it as far as I'm concerned. 1962 Listener 8 Feb. 242/1 The only thing for France was to get out and leave Guinea to get on with it on its own.


g. To prosper, succeed; esp. to get on in the world: to acquire wealth and position. Also, to fare (in some specified way, or with suggestion of some success or progress).

1785 J. Trusler Mod. Times I. 115 So it is in society, we labour to get on and become conspicuous. 1809 [see on adv. 9a]. 1813 T. Moore in Mem. (1853) I. 342 She had to come down and see how her crocuses and primroses before the window were getting on. 1833 H. Martineau Brooke Farm i. 5 The grocer has got on in the world considerably. 1852 Dickens Bleak Ho. II. xii, Not the way to get on in life, you'll tell me? 1861 Hughes Tom Brown at Oxf. i, According to promise, I write to tell you how I get on up here. 1883 [see world n. 17b]. 1885 Manch. Exam. 13 Apr. 5/2 Mr. Courtney seemed to get on swimmingly till he got to Bodmin. 1911 G. B. Shaw Getting Married Pref., in Doctor's Dilemma, etc. 124 It used to be said that members of large families get on in the world.


h. To manage without (something viewed as helpful), with (something deemed inadequate).

1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. vii, Be a good fellow, and let's try if we can't get on without the crib. 1875 Jowett Plato (ed. 2) III. 47 A State may get on without cobblers. 1889 F. C. Philips Yng. Ainslie's Courtship I. xiii. 173 The universe could get on very well without them.


i. To attain intimacy or maintain friendly relations with (a person); to agree, harmonize, fraternize (together).

1816 Lady Granville Lett. (1894) I. 101 His manner is brusque and short, and I got on but little with him. 1844 Lady G. C. Fullerton Ellen Middleton (1854) I. 177 We entered into conversation, and got on (as the phrase is) very well. 1852 Dickens Bleak Ho. ii. vii, They get on together delightfully. 1885 F. Anstey Tinted Venus 36 You can see for yourself that we shouldn't be likely to get on together. 1888 J. Payn Myst. Mirbridge (Tauchn.) II. xxviii, 283 [She] had none of the usual misgivings about getting on with her mother-in-law. 1889 F. C. Philips Yng. Ainslie's Courtship II. xv. 163, I am an easy sort of fellow to get on with.


j. to be getting on for (to, towards): to be advancing towards, coming close to (a certain age, time, number, etc.).

1861 Mayhew Lond. Labour III. 183, I was about getting on for twelve when father first bought me a concertina. 1861 Temple Bar III. 145 It's getting on for eleven. 1874 G. W. Dasent Tales fr. Fjeld 64 When it was getting on towards gray dawn in the morning, down fell snow. 1892 St. Nicholas Mag. XIV. 502/2 Lott was taller than ever. ‘He's getting on for six feet’, said Tom. 1892 Review Rev. 15 Mar. 301/1 We have an overcrowded population getting on to 40,000,000.


k. To advance, move onwards (of time). to get on in years or life: (of persons) to become aged.

1882 Besant Revolt of Man ii. (1883) 52 He took out his watch and remarked that the time was getting on. 1885 ‘L. Malet’ Col. Enderby's Wife (ed. 3) I. ii. i. 102 As one gets on in years. 1891 Temple Bar Oct. 149 He was getting on in life, whereas his fiancée was not yet twenty.


l. With to: to grasp the meaning, truth or significance of; to understand; to detect or find. colloq. (orig. U.S.).

1880 Chicago Inter-Ocean 2 June 6/3 The visitors taking kindly to Ward's curves, Dunlap and McCormick especially getting on to him in fine style. 1889 J. W. Riley Pipes o' Pan 28 Get onto that position for a poet! 1893 ‘ Johnston Smith’ Maggie xv. 130 Do yehs want people ter get onto me? 1923 Wodehouse Inimitable Jeeves ix. 97, I knew there wasn't a chance of my being able to work this stage wheeze in London without somebody getting on to it and tipping off the guv'nor. 1930 J. B. Priestley Angel Pavement vi. 277 That was a bit of smart thinking on your part.‥ There aren't many men about here who could have got on to it like that. 1940 E. Percy in Best One-Act Plays 1940 70 It's very fortunate I got on to it in time. I'm sure I've saved Ann a great deal of unhappiness.


m. With to: to get into touch or communication with (someone).

1895 W. B. Yeats Let. 3 Mar. (1954) ii. 252, I am beginning to think of getting on at Roscommon to Douglas Hyde. I shall go from that to Dublin. 1955 Times 30 June 9/5 Then later I read the body was to be exhumed. This thing got on my nerves, so I got on to the police.


72. get out. a. intr. (See sense 31 and out.) to get out from under: see under adv. 4b.

a1300 Cursor M. 17350 Þai‥did to sper þe dors fast‥þat he suld noþer-quar get vte. 1665 Hooke Microgr. 121, I found them [vegetable growths] just gotten out, with very little or no stalk. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 19 Seven more got out after me, and 35 before, so that 43 of us only escaped.


b. imp. = ‘Go away’, ‘be off’ (expressing disbelief, dissent, or a desire to hear no more). colloq.

1711 Ld. Molesworth tr. Hotman's Franco-Gallia (1721) 136 You have nothing to do here (said she): get out! 1840 Dickens Old C. Shop x, Kit only replied by bashfully bidding his mother ‘get out’. 1851 Seaworthy Bertie vii. 78 Thrue as the tin commandhers! Git aout! 1887 Blackw. Mag. Dec. 763/2, ‘I shan't, then’, said the boy sulkily‥‘He belongs to my father—you get out’.


c. Of the weather: To turn out, become (fine, etc.).

1852 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. XIII. ii. 336 The afternoon got out very fine.


d. To leak out, become known.

1891 Boston (Mass.) Jrnl. 28 Nov. 2/3 The fact that this step was to be taken did not get out till the charges were safe in the hands of the Governor.


e. slang. Racing. (See quot. 1884.) Stock Exchange. To get rid of one's shares in any venture.

1884 H. Smart Fr. Post to Finish xlii, Johnson‥had taken more than one opportunity of what is termed ‘getting out’, that is, backing the horse against which he had previously laid. 1887 Daily News 21 July 6/1 Until they shall have retailed their wares, and, to use the expressive slang of the Stock Exchange, ‘got out’.


f. trans. (See sense 27 and out.)

a1400 Sir Perc. 2064 Then Percevelle the gode Hys swerde owt he get. 1442 Cursor M. 9652 (Bedford) A! þat wrech Frende withoute, þat non frende gete may hym oute. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 123 Much after the manner that Fell-mongers beat their Furs, to get out the Worms. 1691 T. H[ale] Acc. New Invent. 46 Some of them were gotten out by the Caulkers with their Spike-Irons. 1712 W. Rogers Voy. 105 It falling calm, we both got out our Oars. 1762 Foote Lyar i. Wks. 1799 I. 283 My dear Miss Godfrey, what trouble I have had to get you out! 1801 R. Cecil Wks. (1811) I. 138 He was led to invent an instrument for transferring the form of the model to the marble (technically called getting out the points). 1849 Thackeray Pendennis xliii, That rascal Blackland got the bones out, and we played hazard on the dining-table. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. iii, You've been making all these foolish marks on yourself, which you can never get out. 1884 Milit. Engin. I. ii. 67 The excavation in which the shaft is placed is got out.


g. To draw out (information), elicit, find out by inquiry.

1530 Palsgr. 563/1, I get out the truthe of a mater that is in doute, je saiche and je espluche. 1611 Bible Ecclus. xiii. 11 Smiling vpon thee [he] will get out thy secrets. 1662 J. Davies Mandelslo's Trav. 230 They endeavour to get out the truth by fair means. 1861 Temple Bar II. 139 In cross~examination I had ‘got out’ some facts.


h. To publish (a book). Also intr.

1786 T. Jefferson Writ. (1859) II. 6 A bad French translation which is getting out here. 1846 Geo. Eliot Let. Mar. in J. W. Cross Life (1885) I. ii. 141, I wish we could get the book out in May. 1870 D. G. Rossetti Let. 3 Feb. (1965) II. 787, I suppose I cannot get out till April.


i. To succeed in bringing out (a sound).

1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 269, I could not find it in my heart to get out a negative. 1842 Tennyson Gardener's Dau. 89 The lark could scarce get out his notes for joy.


j. Cricket. To put out, dismiss (a batsman or side). Also intr., to be put out. So to get oneself out: to be dismissed, to be got out, freq. with the implication that one is oneself largely to blame.

1833 J. Nyren Young Cricketer's Tutor 89 They were devilish troublesome customers to get out. 1836 [see out adv. 4c.]. 1897 K. S. Ranjitsinhji Jubilee Bk. Cricket iv. 178 People get themselves out off slow bowling more often than the bowler gets them out. 1908 E. P. Oppenheim Missioner i. vi. 62 Stephen is in now.‥ If he gets out, the match is over. 1912 A. A. Lilley 24 Yrs. Cricket x. 137 He [sc. Victor Trumper]‥never gave one the remotest suggestion that he would ever get out. 1926 J. B. Hobbs My Cricket Mem. xvi. 214 We did well to get them out for this total.


k. To succeed in solving or finishing (a puzzle, game, etc.). colloq.

1924 B. Dalton Games of Patience 34 Lady Betty‥ The game‥is not easy to get out. 1928 R. Knox Footsteps at Lock xvi. 158 He had ‘got it out’. ‘The cipher?’ ‘No, the patience.’ 1931 N. Coward Post Mortem ii. 16 Lady Cavan is seated at a bridge table playing Canfield Patience.‥ Lady C. I got it out yesterday. 1951 C. P. Snow Masters iii. xli. 328 I've got it out!‥ I've got the answer to the slow neutron business.


73. get out of. a. intr. To issue or emerge from, to succeed in doing so; to escape from; to leave, quit. to get out of bed: to rise. to have got out of bed on the wrong side: a jocular explanation of bad temper.

a1533 Ld. Berners Huon xxi. 64 Or he can gete out of the wood he wyll cause reyne and wynde. 1585 T. Washington tr. Nicholay's Voy. i. xx. 25b, Some of them before they coulde gette out of the barke were stripped intoo their shyrtes. 1639 Du Verger tr. Camus' Admir. Events 89 The Marquesse to get out of the confusion, and to avoyd the tumult‥retired to his Castle. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 92 The Bride‥gets out of bed, gets on a morning Gown [etc.]. 1726 Adv. Capt. R. Boyle 64, I told him they might do as they thought fit, but I would get out of the Way. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. v. 187 He was‥all in rags, being but just got out of Paita goal. 1849 Macaulay Hist. Eng. v. I. 600 Before they got out of the lane more than a hundred of them had been killed or wounded. 1887 G. R. Sims Mary Jane's Mem. 203, I never lived in a family that so often got out of bed on the wrong side, to use a homely expression.


b. To get beyond, esp. to get out of sight, reach; to get out of one's depth (see depth); to get out of hand: †to advance beyond the necessity for instruction or guidance (obs.); (of horses) to break away from control.

1632 J. Hayward tr. Biondi's Eromena 73 The Galley‥got quit out of their sight. 1748 Anson's Voy. ii. v. 171 They flattered themselves they were got out of his reach. 1765 Foote Commissary ii. Wks. 1799 II. 22 We have at our school two‥that were full half a year before they could get out of hand. 1892 Pall Mall G. 19 Jan. 4/3 He remained three hours in the water, afraid to move, lest he should get out of his depth. Mod. The horses got completely out of hand and dashed down the hill.


c. To give up, leave off (a fashion, etc.). Of things: To begin to go out of (fashion).

1711 Addison Spect. No. 119 ⁋7 The Rural Beaus are not yet got out of the Fashion that took place at the time of the Revolution. 1742 Richardson Pamela III. 193 And between the one Character, which she wants to get into, and the other she dares not get out of, she trips up and down mincingly. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 214 Those classical wigs‥that I am sorry to see getting out of fashion, yclept bobs.


d. To evade, escape from, avoid.

1885 Sir N. Lindley in Law Times Rep. LIII. 479/1, I do not see how to get out of the language of the Act. 1888 J. Payn Myst. Mirbridge (Tauchn.) I. xxiii. 282 He is like a schoolboy in getting out of things that are disagreeable to him. 1893 Earl Dunmore Pamirs I. 228 He tried to evade the question and‥he attempted to get out of giving a direct reply.


e. trans. To draw out, elicit (information) from (a person); also, to succeed in obtaining (money, work, etc.) from one.

1632 J. Hayward tr. Biondi's Eromena 189 The Queene, perceiving well what he meant‥yet resolved to get it plainly out of him. 1676 Wycherley Pl. Dealer v. ii, I told you 'twas in vain to think of getting money out of her. 1720 De Foe Capt. Singleton xi. (1840) 202 This was the account we got out of them. 1737 [S. Berington] G. di Lucca's Mem. 17 We resolv'd to try what we could get out of him by his own Confession. 1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. ii, You won't get anything out of him worth having.


f. To extract (juice, etc.) from (any substance).

1662 J. Davies Mandelslo's Trav. 84 Opium‥is nothing but the juice which is got out of poppy, by an incision made therein.


g. to get out of hand: to finish (a piece of work).

1793 Smeaton Edystone L. §284, I found‥six pieces‥unset, but which were scarcely got out of hand, when the swell came on so violent.


74. get over. a. intr. (See sense 31 and over.)

1597 Shakes. 2 Hen. IV, i. i. 171 You knew he walk'd o're perils, on an edge More likely to fall in, then to get o're. 1677 W. Hubbard Narrative i. (1865) 89 Capt. Henchman‥as soon as he could get over with six Files of Men‥followed after the Enemy. 1705 W. Bosman Guinea 259 They [Camelions] have also several times been sent to Europe, and got over alive. 1881 Henty Cornet of Horse xiii. (1888) 134 Fascines had to be laid down, and the rivulets filled up, before guns could get over.


b. trans. (See sense 27 and over.)

1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 197 So I told him, I would get him over, and bid him stay there.


c. To finish with, have done with (esp. something troublesome or disagreeable). Also, to get it over with.

1813 Jane Austen Let. 15 Sept. (1952) 323 At nine we are to set off for Grafton House, and get that over before breakfast. 1861 J. Ruffini Dr. Antonio xi, Yes, let us get it over at once. 1889 J. Masterman Scotts of Bestminster III. xx. 248 The sooner you get the interview over the better. 1890 I. D. Hardy New Othello II. ix. 207 He had made these three engagements for the one day so as to get them all over together. 1935 Punch 4 Sept. 262/2 Already from Australia I hear of ‘meet up’, ‘rest up’, and ‘get it over with’. 1947 R. Allen Home Made Banners iii. 18 Figure I might as well sign up tomorrow and get it over with.


d. To win over, gain to one's side. Obs.

1799 Spirit Publ. Jrnls. (1800) III. 395 John has got over most of her servants‥and he has made large promises to others.


e. trans. and intr. = get across (see across B. 2b).

1916 Picture-Play III. 122 If he works from characters and uses‥bits of effective business to ‘get his plays over’, he [sc. the scenario writer] should keep such material in handy files. 1920 Wodehouse Jill the Reckless xviii. 261 Dramatic critics‥were telling each other that ‘The Rose of America’ was just another of those things but it had apparently got over. 1921 H. A. Vachell Blinkers viii. §3 Mrs. Merrytree, delighted to perceive that she had, in stage parlance, ‘got over’, held the situation firmly. 1928 Sunday Express 29 Apr. 5/6 Her friendliness ‘gets over’.


75. get round. a. intr. (See sense 31 and round.)

1748 Anson's Voy. ii. iv. 160 Pizarro's squadron‥had got round into these seas. 1812–16 J. Smith Panorama Sci. & Art I. 528 When the planet has got round to B, its projectile force is as much diminished‥as it was augmented.


b. To recover from illness, get well.

1857 Hughes Tom Brown ii. vi, Thompson died last week? The other three boys are getting quite round, like you. 1885 C. L. Pirkis Lady Lovelace III. xli. 64 She would get round fifty times as quickly in the lighter, brighter room.


c. With to: to succeed in finding the time, energy, or inclination for (doing something); to come to the point of dealing with.

[1902 W. D. Howells Lit. & Life 155 The high banks of the seasonable Christmas-week snow, which the street-cleaners had heaped up there till they could get round to it with their carts.] 1946 K. Tennant Lost Haven (1947) xiv. 221 Everything in Lost Haven was put off until someone should have enough time to ‘get round to it’. 1961 J. Seymour Fat of Land viii. 106 Our neighbour Richard cans hares, but we never got round to that. 1967 K. Giles Death in Diamonds viii. 145 He must take Elizabeth there for a weekend, he resolved, with a slight undertone of sadness at the thought he would probably never get round to it.


76. get through. a. intr. (See sense 31 and through.) b. To reach a destination. c. Of a bill: To pass in parliament. d. To succeed in an examination.

1694 Acc. Sev. Late Voy. ii. (1711) 13 The Ice was already-fixed to the Land, so that we could but just get through. 1854 ‘C. Bede’ Verdant Green ii. xi. 100 So you see, Gig lamps, I'm safe to get through!—it's impossible for them to plough me, with all these contrivances. 1885 U. S. Grant Pers. Mem. I. 411 Troops after a forced march of twenty miles are not in a good condition for fighting the moment they get through. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 175 The Irish Tithe Bill‥got through at last, though much cut about by the Opposition. 1895 A. F. Warr in Law Times XCIX. 547/1 An articled clerk of average sharpness may rely upon getting through with three month's coaching.


e. to get through with: to succeed in accomplishing, enduring, or the like.

1839 A. Constable Let. 4 Feb. in J. Constable's Corr. (1962) 306 Your Uncle Golding's affairs I have not got through with yet. 1870 B. Harte Luck of Roaring Camp, Bets were freely offered and taken‥that ‘Sal would get through with it’. 1878 Scribner's Mag. XV. 866/1 You would be surprised to know the number of books young girls manage to get through with. 1888 McCarthy & Mrs. Praed Ladies' Gallery II. xii. 234, I must have had pretty well all the heart-throbs a sinful man could get through with. 1893 Punch 29 Apr. 199 Don't know how I should get through with my work, if I were tied down to eight hours a day.


f. trans. To secure the implementation of (a bill or other political measure).

1873 ‘Mark Twain’ & Warner Gilded Age xx. 190 The Senator‥favored the appropriation and he gave the Colonel‥to understand that he would endeavor to get it through.


g. intr. To establish communication by radio or telephone. Also trans., to send or receive (a message) by radio or telephone.

1895 A. R. Bennett Teleph. Syst. Europe 11 The delay and uncertainty in getting through would probably deter him from using the telephone at all. 1902 Beerbohm in Sat. Rev. 27 Dec. 805/1 We feel‥that he has rung up a messenger-boy after failing to ‘get through’ on the telephone. 1916 ‘Boyd Cable’ Action Front 188 The signallers leaped to their instruments, buzzed off the call, and getting through, rattled their messages off. Ibid. 189 They haven't had time since they got my message through. 1954 G. Durrell 3 Singles to Adv. iv. 85, I tried to contact McTurk to let him know that we were coming, but I could not get through.


h. With to: to reach the attention or understanding of (someone); to communicate with. colloq.

1961 in Webster. 1962 J. Braine Life at Top iii. 54 He had defeated me; I couldn't think up any way to get through to him. 1969 A. Hunter Gently Coloured ii. 14 You don't have to answer them, but you can do. Am I getting through to you, Osgood?


77. get to. intr. To begin eating. (Cf. 49.)

1827 Carlyle Germ. Rom. I. 57 The traveller's appetite was gone. The host endeavoured to encourage him. ‘Why do you not get to? Come, take somewhat for the raw foggy morning.’


78. get together. a. trans. To collect, gather together (persons and things).

c1400 Destr. Troy 11782 The golde was all gotyn, & the grete sommes Of qwhete, & of qwhite syluer, qwemly togedur. 1548 Hall Chron., Edw. IV, 222 He gat together a great navy of shippes. 1600 Shakes. A.Y.L. i. iii. 136 Let's away And get our Iewels and our wealth together. 1639 Du Verger tr. Camus' Admir. Events 50 Betooke himselfe to spend foolishly, what he had so unjustly gotten together. 1662 J. Davies Mandelslo's Trav. 184 They get together fourscore of the handsomest young Women. 1771 E. Griffith tr. Viaud's Shipwreck 52 There never was so small a number of persons got together oppressed with so many misfortunes. 1848 A. Jameson Sacr. & Leg. Art (1850) 278 Seven of the wisest masters that could be gotten together. 1890 T. F. Tout Hist. Eng. fr. 1689, 42 Argyll had got together a fair-sized army.


b. intr. To meet, assemble. Also, to confer; to meet in friendly conference; to agree.

1694 Acc. Sev. Late Voy. ii. (1711) 118 They got together in great numbers‥so that we were forced to flee. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 25 They use commonly to get together near to the Sea-shore in the morning. 1816 Jane Austen Emma II. iii. 47 It is such a happiness when good people get together. 1889 Judge (U.S.) 10 Aug. 282/1 Five Men‥are to be hanged on the same day. In other words, they will follow Mr. Dana's advice and get together. 1889 Puck (U.S.) 14 Aug. 418/2 ‘I saw you conferring with Congressman Shouter this morning.’‥ ‘Why, yes; he said that we ought to get together.’ 1904 N.Y. Times 23 Dec. 1 The jury was unable to get together, and the Presiding Justice had ordered them locked up for the night. 1923 Illustr. London News 1 Sept. 418/3 So widely divergent are the standpoints that I wonder the police authorities do not get together‥and formulate a standard practice.


c. trans. In Rowing, to cause (a crew) to work together. Also intr.

1876 E. D. Brickwood Boat Racing i. viii. 97 If the progress made by the crew is satisfactory, and they have got well together, a regular racing outrigger may be substituted for the tub. 1888 W. B. Woodgate Boating xii. 170 The other days are long-course days of long grinds, to get men together, and to reduce weight. 1898 Encycl. Sport II. 280/2 As the day of the race‥draws near, the attention of the coach must be given entirely towards getting the crew absolutely together.


d. To organize, harmonize, put in order. slang (orig. U.S.).

1962 Down Beat 12 Apr. 22, I guess I was on my way in '57, when I started to get myself together musically. 1969 It 4–17 July 10/3 The promoters just hadn't got things together at all and would have made an immense loss.


79. get under. trans. To subdue, overcome (esp. a fire).

1752 Convent-Garden Jrnl. 23 June 3/2 Yesterday Morning‥a Fire happened at the Swan Alehouse‥but three Engines coming immediately, it was soon got under. 1791 Chron. in Ann. Reg. 4* The fire was got under. 1799 in Spirit Publ. Jrnls. (1800) III. 387 Advices from Lime~house mention that a violent quarrel broke out between Mr. and Mrs. Tarpaulin, which was not got under when the post came away. 1806–7 J. Beresford Miseries Hum. Life (1826) ii. xviii, The assault is continued‥till every meadow is completely got under. 1884 Manch. Exam. 8 Apr. 4/7 The fires fortunately were got under before much damage had been done.


80. get up. a. intr. To rise, raise oneself to a sitting or (more commonly) a standing posture; esp. to rise from bed or rise to one's feet. Colloq. phrases: to get up and get (U.S.), to get up and go: to start moving quickly or acting energetically; to make haste; to get up early (in the morning): to be alert, wide awake, or quick.

c1340 Cursor M. 3721 (Fairf.) ‘Fader’, he saide, ‘gete vp in bedde; wiþ þis mete þou sal be fedde’. ?a1550 Freiris Berwik 561 in Dunbar's Poems (1893) 303 In ane myr he fell‥Ȝeit gat he vp. 1583 Hollyband Campo di Fior 5 Get up, get up, out of the idle fethers. 1632 J. Hayward tr. Biondi's Eromena 22 He could not possibly cause him [a horse] to get up on his feet. 1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 290 The king was so incens'd‥that as soon as he got up the next morning [etc.]. 1738 Swift Pol. Conversat. 98 If you fall by the Way, don't stay to get up again. 1806–7 J. Beresford Miseries Hum. Life (1826) vi. xxii, Getting up for a journey with a racking headache. 1841 Lane Arab. Nts. I. 107, I got up immediately, and followed her until she had quitted the palace. 1864 B. Cotton Songster 10 Monsieur will be invited to just ‘get up and get’. 1870 ‘Mark Twain’ Lett. to Publishers (1967) 39 Have written first four chapters of the book, and I tell you the ‘Innocents Abroad’ will have to get up early to beat it. 1884 [see early adv. 1a]. 1885 Manch. Weekly Times 6 June 5/5 As soon as a long-winded orator gets up the members wisely retire. 1903 J. Fox Little Shepherd xxii, A voice bellowed from the rear‥‘Git up and git, boys!’ That was the order for the charge. 1940 F. L. Allen Since Yesterday iv. 79 They were exhibiting the same emotional willingness to get up and go, they knew not where, that was being exhibited in Germany by multitudes of men and women. 1960 J. Mortimer Lunch Hour 150 Well, you didn't pin it on Sammy Noles. Oh, no. Sammy gets up too early in the morning for that little carry on.


b. To ascend, mount, climb up: esp. to mount on horseback; also in fig. phrases, to ascend, rise in dignity; to rise to a certain level.

1530 Palsgr. 563/2, I get up upon a ladder or any hyghe thyng, je monte. 1548 Hall Chron., Hen. VI, 149b, This Marques thus gotten vp, into fortunes trone‥was shortely erected to the estate and degree of a Duke. 1553 Eden Treat. Newe Ind. (Arb.) 16 When you attempt to geat vp to ryde on them. 1629 Earle Microcosm., Emptie Wit (Arb.) 81 A verse or some such worke he may sometimes get vp to, but seldome aboue the stature of an Epigram. 1658 Trad. Mem. K. Jas. Gij, By what steps the Puritans got up, and the old Clergy degenerated. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 189 After this they took a Ladder‥one of the other four got up to the top of it. 1791 [see 30 above]. 1844 Dickens Mart. Chuz. viii, The coach stopped and went on‥Passengers got up and passengers got down. 1847 Marryat Childr. N. Forest v, He used to get up into the trees.


c. To come up, come close to.

1659 B. Harris Parival's Iron Age 279 The wind coming at North and by West, they could not get up to them. Ibid. 280 The rest were not able to get up being to the lee~ward. 1700 S. L. tr. Fryke's Voy. E. Ind. 179 This made us the more Earnest to get up to 'em. 1796 Nelson 25 Apr. in Nicolas Disp. (1845) II. 162 The batteries‥opened on our approach and the fire was returned as our Ships got up.


d. Of fire, wind, the sea: To begin to show action or movement; to increase in force or violence.

1556 in W.H. Turner Select. Rec. Oxford (1880) 246 The fire got up. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales II. 136 The wind got up with the sun. 1890 S. Lane-Poole Barbary Corsairs i. xi. 121 The wind was getting up, the sea rising.


e. Of health: to get up again: to reach its former (good) condition. Obs.

1788 Nelson 6 May in Nicolas Disp. (1845) I. 273 My health is got up again, after the Doctors telling me they could do nothing for me.


f. Of game: To rise from cover.

1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 43 Traversing one of our untrodden wildernesses, with‥hogs‥quail and partridges, getting up on all sides. 1850 Tait's Mag. XVII. 614/1 He never missed anything that got up within range.


g. colloq. As a command to a horse = Go! go ahead!

1887 F. Francis Jr. Saddle & Mocassin vii. 123 Get up!—get up‥he says‥and once more the horses resume their gait.


h. Cricket. Of the ball: To rise off the pitch higher than usual.

1828 Sporting Mag. Feb. 244/2 Straight-armed bowlers are invariably slow bowlers. Their balls, indeed, get up fast, but they never come fast to the long stop. 1881 Sportsman's Year-bk. 139 A ball got up and smashed his hand. 1888 A. G. Steel in Cricket (Badm.) 163 Should the ball ‘shoot’ or ‘get up’.


i. refl. To rise up (preparatory to action).

1535 Coverdale 2 Chron. xiii. 6 But Ieroboam‥gat him vp [1611 is risen vp] & fell awaye from his lorde. 1737 Whiston Josephus, Antiq. i. vii. §2 But after a long time he got him up and removed from that country.


j. trans. (See sense 27 and up.)

1662 J. Davies Olearius' Voy. Ambass. 157 We at last made a shift to get up the great [anchor]. 1697 W. Dampier Voy. (1729) I. 416 Having fine handsom weather we got up our yards again. a1732 T. Boston Crook in Lot (1805) 107 The man naturally bends his force to get off the weight, that he may get up his head. 1735 J. Price Stone-Br. Thames 6 The rest of the Piers‥are all got up to the Stones above-mentioned. 1822 G. W. Manby Voy. Greenland (1823) 12 All the crew were called to get up the whale~boats. 1876 G. J. Whyte-Melville Katerfelto v. 60 Show me where the deer is harboured. The Lord have mercy on him, for I will not, when once I get him up to bay.


k. To prepare, make ready, organize, set on foot, bring into existence.

1593 R. Bancroft Daung. Posit. iv. i. 136 The Puritanes in Scotland haue got-vp their discipline. 1728 Newton Chronol. Amended i. 179 Minos‥got up a potent fleet. 1771 Smollett Humph. Cl. 8 Nov., We have got up several farces. 1806–7 J. Beresford Miseries Hum. Life (1826) vi. xxix, A mob of red-hot cooks and scullions‥getting up two or three large dinners. 1831 Hist. in Ann. Reg. (1832) 153/1 Petitions to the magistrates in his favour were gotten up by his friends. 1840 E. E. Napier Excurs. S. Africa II. 291 It was deemed more than probable that he would ‘get up a fight’. 1850 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. XI. ii. 681 It is‥more easy to get up a good breed than to keep it up. 1868 Freeman Norman Conq. II. x. 499 It was affirmed that the revolt had been‥got up by the secret practices of Harold.


l. To dress (linen), make ready for wearing.

1750 Johnson Rambler No. 12 ⁋3 There would be nothing to do but to clean my mistress's room, get up her linen [etc.]. 1834 T. Medwin Angler in Wales I. 77 Hard at work‥at what is called getting up frills. 1884 G. Gissing Unclassed II. iii. iv. 86, I was in the laundry nearly six months, and became quite clever in getting up linen.


m. To dress (the person, hair, etc.) in a certain way; to produce or ‘turn out’ in a (specified) style as regards externals; said with reference to the mounting of a play, the binding, print, and paper of a book, etc. Chiefly in pa. pple. got up. Also intr. for refl.

1782 Mrs. Thrale Let. to Johnson 16 Feb., I am told the new plays this year are got up (as the phrase is) very penuriously. 1800 in Spirit Publ. Jrnls. (1801) IV. 388 The principal novelty is a piece called the Confederacy‥which is getting up in great style. 1823 J. Badcock Dom. Amusem. 51 Instead of two reflectors, this instrument may be got up with three or more such planes. 1828 L. Hunt Ess. (Camelot) 13 The pocket-books that now contain any literature are ‘got up’, as the phrase is, in the most unambitious style. 1858 R. S. Surtees Ask Mamma iii. 7 Miss Willing was extremely well got up. 1863 [Hemyng] Eton Sch. Days xviii. (1864) 207 He felt confident in his power of ‘getting up’ so that no one would recognise him. 1879 F. T. Pollok Sport Brit. Burmah I. 8 The hair is taken great care of and tastefully got up à la Chinois. 1890 Sat. Rev. 22 Nov. 603/2 The book is prettily got up.


n. To make good, recover (an expense, a deficiency, loss, arrears).

1607 Middleton 5 Gallants i. i, Tis got vp at your house in an after-noone ifaith, the hire of the whole month. 1622 Weston in Bradford Plymouth Plant. (1856) 115 Mr. Beachamp and myselfe bought this little ship‥partly to gett up what we are formerly out. 1687 Miege Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., I am so much a Loser, I must get it up another Way. 1872 Black Adv. Phaeton xv, The afternoon was spent in getting up arrears of correspondence.


o. To collect, raise (money). Obs.

1639 T. Brugis tr. Camus' Mor. Relat. 314 Having gotten up a good summe of money, hee stole away. 1697 W. Dampier Voy. I. Introd. 3, I was willing to get up some money before my return, having laid out what I had at Jamaica.


p. To cause to rise; to lift up, raise from a stooping position; also, to improve (one's health). to get one's or another person's back up: to become or make angry (cf. back n. 24f.).

1674 tr. Martiniere's Voy. N. Countries 106, I awaked at the noise the Master made to get up his Family. a1708 Beveridge Thes. Theol. (1711) III. 410 It is a good while, before we can get up our hearts from earth to heaven. a1732 T. Boston Crook in Lot (1805) 152 God will‥remove the weight so long hung at them‥and let them get up their back long bowed. 1815 M. J. Clairmont in Dowden Shelley (1887) I. 521 Don't you think Papa and Mamma will go down to the seaside, to get up their health a little? 1887 Rider Haggard Jess ii, ‘I'm your brother.’ ‘Are you?’ I said, beginning to get my back up.


q. to get up steam: to produce sufficient steam to work the engine; often fig.

1832 Marryat N. Forster xl, I have‥a way of going a-head, by getting up the steam‥—and the fuel is brandy. 1844 Darwin in Life & Lett. (1887) I. 301 Get up your steam, if this weather lasts, and have a ramble in Wales. 1883 Fenn Middy & Ensign xxxix. 237 Every effort being made by the firemen to get up steam.


r. To work up, create in one's self (an emotion or feeling).

1837 J. Halley in Arnot Life (1842) 81 Let him beware of getting up (ὡς εἰπεῖν) certain emotions as due to his views‥of the sacred office. 1860 Temple Bar I. 68 She got up a spurious affection for the creature. 1885 Mrs. Praed Affin. I. ii. 42 These are the only subjects about which she ever gets up any excitement.


s. To acquire a knowledge of (a subject) for a special purpose or by a special effort.

1828 Alford in Life (1873) 32 Getting up the Georgics, reading trigonometry. 1866 Carlyle Inaug. Addr. 172 There is a process called cramming‥that is, getting-up such points of things as the Examiner is likely to put questions about. 1887 A. Birrell Obiter Dicta Ser. ii. 157 He would‥devote studious hours to getting up the subjects to be dicussed.


t. To harvest (a crop); also, to stack (corn).

1844 Jrnl. R. Agric. Soc. V. i. 68 The crops having been got up, the land is‥sown with wheat. 1876 Encycl. Brit. IV. 266 If ‘got up’ damp, it [barley] is liable to generate excessive heat.


VIII. Comb.


81. Comb. (forming substantive and adjective phrases). a. The trans. verb with an object, as †get-nothing, one who earns nothing, an idler; †get-penny, something which brings in money (cf. catchpenny). b. The intr. verb with an adv., as get-away; get-off, (a) an evasion, subterfuge; (b) = take-off n. 3b; (c) the action of ‘getting off’ in jazz (see 70l); an improvisation or ‘break’; also attrib.; get-on, one who ‘gets on’; a successful person; also attrib.; get-there (orig. U.S.), energy, ambition; also attrib. c. get-overable a. (nonce-wd.), that may be won over or got round.

1607 Middleton 5 Gallants i. i, That face will get money ifaith; twill bee a get peny I warrant you. 1614 B. Jonson Barth. Fair v. i, The Gunpowder-plot, there was a get-penny! I haue presented that to an eighteene or twenty pence audience, nine times in an afternoone. a1625 Boys Wks. (1629) 55 As a spend-all so a get-nothing is a theefe to his estate. 1655 R. Younge Agst. Drunkards 4 Drunkards are not onely lazie get nothings but they are also riotous spend alls. 1684 S. G. Angl. Spec. 481 ‘London Lick~penny’‥there is no less Truth in this ‘London Get-penny’. 1832 Chambers's Jrnl. I. 121/2 As a get-off, she commences a eulogy on her butter. 1848 J. H. Newman Loss & Gain 80 ‘But it is an illegal declaration or vow’, said Willis, ‘and so not binding’. ‘Where did you find that get-off?’ said Charles; ‘the priest put that into your head.’ 1853 G. Johnston Nat. Hist. E. Bord. I. 256 Pooh! that explanation won't do. A mere get-off! 1886 J. K. Jerome Idle Thoughts 26 A belted earl may be‥get-overable by flattery; just as every other human being is. 1898 E. N. Westcott David Harum xix. 169 He hain't got much ‘git there’ in his make-up. 1901 Daily Chron. 22 June 10/5 Their style of rowing‥is certainly the ‘get there’ style. 1908 Westm. Gaz. 10 Mar. 14/2 A little weary of this ‘get on’ gospel being continually dinned in their ears. 1908 Daily Chron. 13 Mar. 4/6 Prophetically numbered by Landor among the ‘ons’ who are get-ons. 1916 H. Barber Aeroplane Speaks 50 The Pilot turns the Aeroplane in order to face the wind and thus secure a quick ‘get-off’. 1932 Melody Maker July 593 There is an abundance of trumpet-playing of the first order from the local ‘get-off’ man. 1935 Vanity Fair Nov. 71 Breaks are sometimes known as get-offs or take-offs. 1956 M. Stearns Story of Jazz (1957) xvi. 180 The formula consisted of importing one or two ‘hot’ soloists, or ‘get-off’ men, letting them take a chorus once in a while.


d. The intr. verb with an adj., forming compound adjectives, as get-tough; get-well, esp. designating cards or other forms of message sent to a sick person to express good wishes for his recovery.

1959 Daily Mail 1 Apr. 7/2 The United States wants to force its ‘get tough’ line on the other Western Powers. 1960 News Chron. 14 Oct. 1/5 The Government's get-tough policy follows a growing demand‥to ‘teach the natives a lesson’. 1971 Guardian 19 Nov. 14/3 Criminal Justice Bills tend to be miscellaneous collections of proposals.‥ The current one‥is a sweet-and-sour concoction, with several ‘get tough’ provisions. 1956 B. Cleary Fifteen (1962) x. 145 She looked over the get-well cards in Woodment's stationery store. 1966 Guardian 29 Dec. 7/4 Mrs. Kennedy‥sent him a ‘get-well’ telegram.