come off

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come off (third-person singular simple present comes off, present participle coming off, simple past came off, past participle come off)

  1. To become detached.
    One of the wagon wheels came off.
  2. To have some success; to succeed.
    He tried his Chaplin impression, but it didn't really come off.
  3. (dated) To have an orgasm.
  4. To appear; to seem; to project a certain quality.
    I'm sorry if I came off as condescending; that wasn't my intention.
    You should be careful about how you come off during interviews.
  5. To escape or get off (lightly, etc.); to come out of a situation without significant harm.
    • 1952, British Bee Journal & Bee-keepers Adviser, volume 80, page 466:
      Well that is precisely what I did, and as I had never heard of using gloves and veil in connection with bees I suppose I came off lightly with one sting on the tip of the nose.
  6. To occur; to take place.
    It came off as we expected.
    • 1870 April–September, Charles Dickens, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, London: Chapman and Hall, [], published 1870, →OCLC:
      The concluding ceremony came off at twelve o’clock on the day of departure []
    • 1886, Peter Christen Asbjørnsen, translated by H.L. Brækstad, Folk and Fairy Tales, page 61:
      And then the wedding came off, and the king gave a grand feast which lasted for many a day, and if they have not done feasting by this, why they are still at it.
    • 1916, Arthur J. Rees, John R. Watson, The Hampstead Mystery[2]:
      ‘I was never frightened of any job yet,’ he said, ‘and I'd do this job to-night if the house was full of rozzers,’ Hill pretended that he wasn't particular whether the thing came off or not that night, but all the while he kept egging Fred on to do it.
  7. (obsolete) To come away (from a place); to leave.

Derived terms[edit]