strike out

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strike out (third-person singular simple present strikes out, present participle striking out, simple past struck out, past participle struck out or (somewhat archaic) stricken out)

  1. (intransitive, often with at) To lash out; to strike or hit at someone or something, particularly something in arm's length of the striker and at or near the level of the striker's head.
    • 1885, James Runciman, Grace Balmaign's sweetheart[1], page 203:
      The gallant old skipper had struck out with his fist and the blow took effect; "spread the chap's nose all ower his fyesce" as he afterwards said ...
  2. (figuratively) To strongly criticize or make a verbal attack, particularly as a response to previous criticism or provocation.
    • 1954, Kenneth E. Trombley, The life and times of a happy liberal: a biography of Morris Llewellyn Cooke[2], page 163:
      ... 1937, before the Maryland Farm Bureau Federation, he struck out at his critics. He said: When the Federal Government first undertook to help farmers get ...
  3. To draw a line through some text such as a printed or written sentence, with the purpose of deleting that text from the rest of the document.
    • 1787, James Madison, The Writings of James Madison: 1787. Journal of the Constitutional Convention of 1787[3], published 1903, page 165:
      Mr. Randolph moved to strike out the words, "each House" and to insert the words, "the House of Representatives" in Sect. 7.
    • 2017 January 14, “Thailand's new king rejects the army's proposed constitution”, in The Economist[4]:
      This document allowed for the king to reject the draft constitution in its entirety but appeared not to provide for the possibility that he might ask to strike out lines he did not like.
  4. (law, figurative) to treat something as settled
    • 1990 December 14, Supreme Court of Nigeria, Nigeria National Supply Co. Ltd v Establissment Sima of Vaduz[5], number SC 137/1989:
      A Suit filed by respondent Establissment Sima of Vaduz was on the 2nd day of March, 1988 struck out by the Federal High Court. An application under Order 9 rule 6 Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules was argued before that court on 17th day of October, 1988 for relisting the suit. Even though the present appellant as respondent to that motion opposed, the prayer was granted.
    • 2012 November 13, European Court of Human Rights, Hristozov and others v. Bulgaria[6], number 47039/11, marginal 68:
      The Government requested that the applications be partly struck out of the list of cases in accordance with Article 37 § 1 (c) of the Convention, challenging the right of the heirs of the four applicants who had died in the course of the proceedings (Mr Hristozov, Mr Petrov, Ms Pencheva and Mr Behar, see paragraph 4 above) to pursue the applications in their stead. In their view, those heirs could not claim to be indirect victims, and did not have a valid interest in obtaining a ruling by the Court, because the alleged breaches of Articles 2, 3 and 8 of the Convention did not affect them, for two reasons. First, the authorities’ refusal to allow the applicants access to the unauthorised medicinal product that they wished to have administered did not affect other individuals, such as their heirs. Secondly, the rights invoked by the applicants were deeply personal in nature. Moreover, it was not the Court’s task to determine in the abstract whether the relevant domestic law provisions were in line with the Convention.
    • 2016, European Court of Human Rights, Analysis of statistics 2016[7], page 4:
      In 2016 36,579 applications were declared inadmissible or struck out of the list of cases by a Single Judge, a Committee or a Chamber, a 15% decrease compared with 2015 (43,133). The Single-Judge formation decided 30,998 cases in 2016, a decrease of 15% compared with 2015 (36,308). 3,772 applications were struck out by a Chamber or a Committee, in a decision or a judgment, following a friendly settlement or a unilateral declaration, a decrease of 18% (4,628 in 2015). Friendly settlements (2,005) increased by 21% (1,658 in 2015) and unilateral declarations decreased by 41% (1,767 compared to 2,970 in 2015). The remainder of the applications were declared inadmissible by a Chamber or a Committee or struck out by these formations on other grounds.
  5. (ergative, baseball, softball) Of a batter, to be retired after three strikes (missed swings, as opposed to any other way of becoming "out"); of a pitcher, to cause this to happen to the batter.
    Synonym: (pitcher) punch out
    Jones struck out on a nasty slider.
    The pitcher struck out Jones with a nasty slider.
  6. (intransitive, colloquial, figuratively) To fail; to be refused a request or to have a proposal not be accepted, in particular a request for a (hopefully romantic) date.
    Dave asked the new girl to the dance but he struck out.
  7. To begin to make one's way.
    The travellers struck out towards the line of mountains.


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