Definition of stand off in English:

stand off

phrasal verb

  • 1Move or keep away.

    ‘the women stood off at a slight distance’
    • ‘Jessica and I stood off to the side, eager to get under way.’
    • ‘Bill stood off to one side talking quietly with Angela's parents.’
    • ‘I stood off to the side, listening to the conversation.’
    • ‘During this process, the safety observer stood off to the side.’
    • ‘Nathan stood off to the side watching her for a moment.’
    • ‘You're getting ready to play your second shot from the middle of the fairway, and your opponent is standing off to the side, at the edge of the rough.’
    • ‘Unbeknownst to everyone else, a man in an impeccable suit stood off in the shadows, not moving a muscle.’
    • ‘She nodded and stood off to the side as I turned to face Ryan.’
    • ‘Dad stood off to the side, a proud look on his face.’
    • ‘Lauren joined us, and Tommy stood off in the far corner.’
  • 2Nautical
    Sail further away from the shore.

    ‘the ship was standing off on the landward side’
    • ‘Before that time steamers often had to stand off in busy times until it was their turn to be unloaded.’
    • ‘The boat edged in, standing off sufficiently to avoid boats, people and rocks.’
    • ‘They had drafted a number of messages to the ship instructing her to stand off, all of which were sent but apparently went astray.’
    • ‘Recognizing it to be a naval auxiliary, the Shackleton stood off.’