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From Middle English outdrauen, outdrawen, from Old English ūtdragan, from Proto-Germanic *ūtdraganą, equivalent to out- +‎ draw. Cognate with Saterland Frisian uutdreege, West Frisian útdrage (to carry out), Dutch uitdragen (to carry out), German austragen (to deal with; deliver), Icelandic útdraga (to extract; draw out).


outdraw (third-person singular simple present outdraws, present participle outdrawing, simple past outdrew, past participle outdrawn)

  1. To extract or draw out.
  2. (Wild West) To remove a gun from its holster, and fire it, faster than another.
    • Leonard Cohen Hallelujah (song)
      Well maybe there's a God above, but all I've ever learned from love, was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you.
  3. To attract a larger crowd than.
  4. To draw better than; to surpass in creating drawn artworks.
    • 2003, Bhob Stewart, ‎Bill Pearson, ‎Roger Hill, Against the Grain: Mad Artist Wallace Wood (page 313)
      Certainly he could outdraw just about anybody, and he knew how to tell a story, seamlessly weaving words and pictures together.