Definition of reel something off in English:

reel something off

phrasal verb

  • Say or recite something very rapidly and without apparent effort.

    ‘she proceeded to reel off the various dishes of the day’
    • ‘Last night I put on LBC (London radio station) and found there was a quiz going on. It sounded a bit familiar and after a few seconds I realised that I knew what both the quizzer and quizzee were going to say. I was reeling it off, word for word.’
    • ‘Fortier reels off countries whose scenes impress him.’
    • ‘I don't even remember how and why we ended up watching it so much (I mean, I really like it and all, but it's not as though it's my favourite film or anything), but I could probably reel the entire script off from memory.’
    • ‘There are follow-ups once camp's ended but there needs to be much more, said Dr Gately who reels off other ideas such as all-year-round camps, day camps and after-school clubs.’
    • ‘Germany's third defeat under Klinsmann saw the nation's powerful tabloid media reel off a long list of shortcomings.’
    • ‘He knew thousands of place names by heart, and he could reel them off.’
    • ‘He reels off a list of the exotic destinations stamped on the Riddle suitcases: Thailand, Brunei, Malaysia, Mauritius, Japan, the Seychelles and regular visits to the United States.’
    • ‘With a proud full-beam smile, she reels off Phoebe's attributes.’
    • ‘We all know about his many degrees - in part because he isn't shy about reeling them off.’
    • ‘You don't have to know what they stand for, just so long as you can reel them off without choking on all the consonants.’
    • ‘Ours starts badly when, 10 minutes in, I jokingly call him a luvvie after he reels off a list of ‘friends’ who all happen to be A-list British actors.’
    • ‘They just queue up and reel it off, then a soldier goes and gets it for them.’
    • ‘The tale's first half is told from Abe's perspective; old and alone, he reels off wistful tales of his days as a salesman, chronically teetering between regret and distant pride.’
    • ‘On an indifferently decorated stage, he reeled off a lecture-demo.’
    • ‘Shorter plays tenor far more than soprano, and reels off solo after solo that re-emphasise why he is special.’
    • ‘But what about the regular roll call of comparisons critics love to reel off?’
    • ‘He reels off a series of allegations, most of which have either been positively discredited or remain wholly unsubstantiated.’
    • ‘Then, beaming proudly, he reels them off: Stamford Plaza, Sky City, Morrins-ville Motel, the Viaduct, Britomart, Qantas.’
    • ‘At times, you can practically see him battling them off, struggling to be friendly and to act like he is thinking up his answers while he is saying them, rather than simply reeling them off.’
    • ‘So I'm sitting on a bench in Budapest, and J. is reeling some information off about where we've got to go next, when I turn around and see this garden, and see that it's infested with little birds.’
    • ‘The screen fades to green, and the names of all 336 tributaries are slowly reeled off, in apparent contrast to the vagaries of story-telling.’
    • ‘Chic Charnley, who reels off a long list of clubs that he has assisted, was in great form in inspiring Partick's under-21s this past week.’
    • ‘Thousands of binary digits have been reeled off in the correct order, hundreds of random numbers instantly recalled and the order of dozens of packs of cards stashed away in the memory bank.’
    recite, rattle off, loose off, fire off, list rapidly, run through, enumerate, detail, itemize
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