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2 definitions found
 for To tell off
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Off \Off\ ([o^]f; 115), adv. [OE. of, orig. the same word as R.
     of, prep., AS. of, adv. & prep. [root]194. See Of.]
     In a general sense, denoting from or away from; as:
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     1. Denoting distance or separation; as, the house is a mile
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     2. Denoting the action of removing or separating; separation;
        as, to take off the hat or cloak; to cut off, to pare off,
        to clip off, to peel off, to tear off, to march off, to
        fly off, and the like.
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     3. Denoting a leaving, abandonment, departure, abatement,
        interruption, or remission; as, the fever goes off; the
        pain goes off; the game is off; all bets are off.
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     4. Denoting a different direction; not on or towards: away;
        as, to look off.
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     5. Denoting opposition or negation. [Obs.]
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              The questions no way touch upon puritanism, either
              off or on.                            --Bp.
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     From off, off from; off. "A live coal . . . taken with the
        tongs from off the altar." --Is. vi. 6.
     Off and on.
        (a) Not constantly; not regularly; now and then;
        (b) (Naut.) On different tacks, now toward, and now away
            from, the land.
     To be off.
        (a) To depart; to escape; as, he was off without a
            moment's warning.
        (b) To be abandoned, as an agreement or purpose; as, the
            bet was declared to be off. [Colloq.]
     To come off, To cut off, To fall off, To go off, etc.
        See under Come, Cut, Fall, Go, etc.
     To get off.
        (a) To utter; to discharge; as, to get off a joke.
        (b) To go away; to escape; as, to get off easily from a
            trial. [Colloq.]
     To take off To do a take-off on, To take off, to mimic,
        lampoon, or impersonate.
     To tell off
        (a) (Mil.), to divide and practice a regiment or company
            in the several formations, preparatory to marching to
            the general parade for field exercises. --Farrow.
        (b) to rebuke (a person) for an improper action; to scold;
            to reprimand.
     To be well off, to be in good condition.
     To be ill off, To be badly off, to be in poor condition.
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Tell \Tell\ (t[e^]l), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Told (t[=o]ld); p.
     pr. & vb. n. Telling.] [AS. tellan, from talu tale, number,
     speech; akin to D. tellen to count, G. z[aum]hlen, OHG.
     zellen to count, tell, say, Icel. telja, Dan. tale to speak,
     t[ae]lle to count. See Tale that which is told.]
     1. To mention one by one, or piece by piece; to recount; to
        enumerate; to reckon; to number; to count; as, to tell
        money. "An heap of coin he told." --Spenser.
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              He telleth the number of the stars.   --Ps. cxlvii.
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              Tell the joints of the body.          --Jer. Taylor.
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     2. To utter or recite in detail; to give an account of; to
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              Of which I shall tell all the array.  --Chaucer.
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              And not a man appears to tell their fate. --Pope.
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     3. To make known; to publish; to disclose; to divulge.
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              Why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife?
                                                    --Gen. xii.
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     4. To give instruction to; to make report to; to acquaint; to
        teach; to inform.
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              A secret pilgrimage,
              That you to-day promised to tell me of? --Shak.
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     5. To order; to request; to command.
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              He told her not to be frightened.     --Dickens.
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     6. To discern so as to report; to ascertain by observing; to
        find out; to discover; as, I can not tell where one color
        ends and the other begins.
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     7. To make account of; to regard; to reckon; to value; to
        estimate. [Obs.]
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              I ne told no dainity of her love.     --Chaucer.
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     Note: Tell, though equivalent in some respect to speak and
           say, has not always the same application. We say, to
           tell truth or falsehood, to tell a number, to tell the
           reasons, to tell something or nothing; but we never
           say, to tell a speech, discourse, or oration, or to
           tell an argument or a lesson. It is much used in
           commands; as, tell me the whole story; tell me all you
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     To tell off, to count; to divide. --Sir W. Scott.
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     Syn: To communicate; impart; reveal; disclose; inform;
          acquaint; report; repeat; rehearse; recite.
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