from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To maintain a safe distance from a hazard.
  • v. To abstain from participation.
  • v. (of a wicket-keeper) to stand a long way behind the wicket so as to catch balls from a fast bowler

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. stand away from an object or person
  • v. stay clear of, avoid


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Now stand back with your friend, and the soul-flame.

    Lion Of Macedon

  • The latter, when her mistress was taking leave of me, literally pushed herself before the old lady as she and I were about to go out of the door of the room (I escorting her to her carriage), and I was obliged to tell the rough, coarse, ignorant German she-boor (much more like a cow than a human creature) that she ought to stand back and allow her mistress to pass, instead of thrusting herself before her and all but knocking her down.

    Further Records, 1848-1883: A Series of Letters

  • Before that time of day, my mother would ask me to try on something—heightwise, I was getting to be the size of some of the ladies she sewed for, though with my still-sparse diet I came nowhere near filling in all their darts and pleats—and she would make me spin, and then she would stand back and clasp her hands together and would tell me, “You know”—then she would stop, and it was a nice effect—“you look ‘lovely’” It was like “fond,” a word soft and kind.

    Hoopi Shoopi Donna

  • I’m trying desperately to find out why I shouldn’t touch this button on my pager and stand back as our crack apprehension team—this is five guys who were all tackles or guards at Nebraska—come through that door in full SWAT gear, guns drawn, and throw you to the ground, mace you, slam on the cuffs, and drag you out by your ears, your Allen Edmonds shoes dragging in the sawdust.

    A Bob Lee Swagger eBook Boxed Set

  • Before that, he'd been able to stand back and rationalise, despite the churning nausea that had made him puke up his breakfast.

    It's October, 1956.

  • But Generalissimo Oosik told me quite frankly that if there's no way to stop Maytera Mint's insurgents from attacking short of firing on them, he'll stand back and let them do it.

    Calde of the Long Sun

  • Oh, I acted like they say we act, you know. [static] And Eula would stand back and look, ‘What can I do with this woman?’

    Oral History Interview with Viola Turner, April 15, 1979. Interview C-0015. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)

  • Making the others stand back was no guarantee that they wouldn’t rush the door before it closed, but Kate took the command as an encouraging sign of Nicholson’s lack of criminal sophistication.

    The Beekeeper's Apprentice


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