Definition of hand something down in English:

hand something down

phrasal verb

  • 1Pass something on to a younger person or a successor.

    ‘songs are handed down from mother to daughter’
    • ‘The major difference between a gift and a theft is that of handing something down as opposed to underhandedly taking something away; in giving, the act itself creates links, whereas in taking all links are denied.’
    • ‘The techniques were handed down from mother to daughter and men had nothing to do with the whole process, other than to sell whatever was left over.’
    • ‘In India, much as it used to be three or four generations ago in America, methods and recipes are handed down directly from mother to daughter, with no written instructions to interfere.’
    • ‘The silver pendant I see around your neck was your father's wedding gift to her; it has been handed down through the eldest daughters and queens of your house for over a thousand years.’
    • ‘Teachers of the lineage transmit the Buddha's knowledge as it has been handed down from teacher to student through the ages.’
    • ‘The songs were handed down in special hand-copied notebooks.’
    • ‘It used to belong to my father, but before he passed away he handed it down to me.’
    • ‘Of course they can conserve these things only by handing them down, by passing them on to their children, or to somebody's children.’
    • ‘All those people are no more, the motherland is unified but their distinguished words are handed down.’
    • ‘The techniques have been handed down to successive generations.’
    pass on, pass down
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  • 2Announce something, especially a judgement or sentence, formally or publicly.

    ‘it was the most liberal decision ever handed down by a football authority’
    • ‘He had done some work experience and had just started college when his sentence was handed down.’
    • ‘Many judgements have been handed down in Germany which have excluded Islamic girls from school classes.’
    • ‘We figured it's a good time to revisit a fascinating hour we spent with her last July just days after her sentence had been handed down.’
    • ‘In Cambodia, sentences are handed down with convictions.’
    • ‘One way round such fears is to allow the relatives to speak after the sentence has been handed down, some critics suggest.’
    • ‘I ought formally to hand the judgment down, unless, having read it, you have noticed any errors or omissions?’
    • ‘Stiff jail sentences were handed down to two men for a vicious city centre attack which, Salisbury crown court heard on Friday, made one shocked bystander ‘feel sick’ to see.’
    • ‘Two weeks later the formal decision was handed down to close the private bank, a bitter pill that Citigroup recently disclosed cost it $244 million in the fourth quarter alone.’
    • ‘Though the Feb. deadline for the course catalogue already passed, Stewart expected that approval of the program would be handed down in the last few weeks.’
    • ‘Asked if he felt remorse after his sentence was handed down, Graner said: ‘There's a war on.’’
    utter, give, make, read, recite, broadcast, give voice to, voice, speak, declaim
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