screw off

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screw off (third-person singular simple present screws off, present participle screwing off, simple past and past participle screwed off)

  1. To remove the lid of a jar or other container by unscrewing it.
    • 2004, Cathy Myata, Speaking rules!: Games and activities for creating effective speakers, presenters and storytellers, page 52:
      Hold it in two hands and screw off the lid. Set the lid down. Inside are pickled onions.
  2. (idiomatic, colloquial) To fail to do one's work; to goof off.
    • 1878, Robert White Stevens, On the stowage of ships and their cargoes: with information regarding freights, charter parties, &c., &c., page 798:
      On account of the high rate of wages at Sydney, stevedores will not "screw off" now so willingly as they did formerly.
  3. (idiomatic, colloquial) To go away at someone's urging; to bugger off.


screw off

  1. (idiomatic, dismissal) To urge someone to leave.

Usage notes[edit]

As a way of urging someone to leave, it is considered vulgar in many settings but may be only a lighthearted rebuke in others.

See also[edit]