Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Wikipedia.
leave well (enough) alone
To refrain from changing, disturbing, or becoming involved in something so as to avoid unintentionally causing (or worsening) problems. To be honest, you're better off leaving well alone at this point. She's so angry that anything you say will just make things worse. Messing with the registry can cause catastrophic problems for your computer. If it isn't already totally busted, I would leave well enough alone.
let well alone
To refrain from changing, disturbing, or becoming involved in something so as to avoid unintentionally causing (or worsening) problems. To be honest, you're better off letting well alone at this point. She's so angry that anything you say will just make things worse. Messing with the registry can cause catastrophic problems for your computer. If it isn't already totally busted, I would let well alone.
man cannot live by bread alone
In order to live a happy, fulfilling life, a person needs more than the basic amenities like food and shelter. I think if we want to really make a difference to those struggling with poverty and homelessness, we need to think beyond simply giving out free food. After all, man cannot live by bread alone.
leave (someone or something) alone
To not interact with or bother someone or interfere with something. Come on, she didn't do anything to you. Leave her alone. At a certain point, you have to just leave the painting alone instead of continuing to make changes to it. I know you're trying to help, but I'd really rather just be left alone right now.
go it alone
To do something without others' help or accompaniment. If no one will join me on this quest, then I'll just go it alone. You know how Greg is, always going it alone even though he has plenty of friends.
1. verb To stop bothering someone or something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "let" and "alone." Why do you keep picking at that scab on your knee? Let it alone already! For the last time, let your brother alone—he needs to study!
2. expression Not to mention. The phrase is used to emphasize that if other more significant or pressing things are not possible or cannot be accommodated, a lesser thing certainly is not or cannot either. I hardly had time to brush my teeth this morning, let alone do my hair! We can't afford a vacation, let alone a trip to Disney World.
laugh and the (whole) world laughs with you(; weep and you weep alone)
People like to be around those who are happy (but not those who are sad or morose). I know he's still hurting from the breakup, but John's misery has made him really hard to be around. Like they say, laugh, and the world laughs with you; weep, and you weep alone.
let well enough alone
To refrain from changing, disturbing, or becoming involved in something so as to avoid unintentionally causing (or worsening) problems. To be honest, you should just let well enough alone at this point. She's so angry that anything you say will just make things worse. Messing with the registry can cause catastrophic problems for your computer. If it isn't already totally busted, I would let well enough alone.
man does not live by bread alone
In order to live a happy, fulfilling life, a person needs more than the basic amenities like food and shelter. I think if we want to really make a difference to those struggling with poverty and homelessness, we need to think beyond simply giving out free food. After all, man does not live by bread alone. Sure, you have material wealth, but you have no spiritual guidance in your life. Why not come to church with me this Sunday? A man does not live by bread alone.
misfortunes never come alone
Bad things, event, situations, outcomes, etc., almost always arrive in groups of two or more all at once or in quick succession. My mother died in a car crash when I was just 12, and then my father succumbed to his grief and passed away a few months later. Misfortunes never come alone, as they say. My business collapsed, my wife left me, and the bank repossessed my home, all in the space of a year. Misfortunes never come alone, it seems.
go it alone
to do something by oneself. Do you need help, or will you go it alone? I think I need a little more experience before I go it alone.
He travels fastest who travels alone.
Prov. It is easier to achieve your goals if you do not have a spouse, children, or other connections to consider. Jill: Don't go yet! Wait for me to get ready. Jane: But you always take at least half an hour. No wonder they always say that he travels fastest who travels alone.
Laugh and the world laughs with you; weep and you weep alone.
Prov. When you are happy, people will want to be around you and share your happiness, but when you are sad, people will avoid you. Nancy: When Harry and I were dating, all our friends invited us places and called to say hello. Now that we've broken up, they treat me as if I don't exist. Jane: Laugh and the world laughs with you; weep and you weep alone.
Leave me alone!
Stop harassing me!; Don't bother me! John: You did it. You're the one who always does it. Bill: Leave me alone! I never did it. Fred: Let's give Bill a dunk in the pool. Bill: Leave me alone!
See also: leave
leave (someone, something, or some creature) aloneand let (someone, something, or some creature) alone; leave (someone, something, or some creature) be; let (someone, something, or some creature) be
to stop bothering someone or something. Don't torment the cat. Leave it alone. I don't want your help. Let me alone. Don't argue about it. Let it be!
let alone someone or something
not to mention or think of someone or something; not even to take someone or something into account. (Fixed order.) Do I have a dollar? I don't even have a dime, let alone a dollar. I didn't invite John, let alone the rest of his family.
let someone or something aloneand leave someone or something alone; leave someone or something be
to avoid touching, bothering, or communicating with someone or something. Leave me alone. I don't want your help. Let it alone! Don't touch it! It may be hot!
let well enough aloneand leave well enough alone
to leave things as they are (and not try to improve them). There isn't much more you can accomplish here. Why don't you just let well enough alone? This is as good as I can do. I'll stop and leave well enough alone.
Man does not live by bread alone.
Prov. In order to survive, people need more than physical things like food and shelter.; People need mental or spiritual things like satisfaction and love. (Biblical.) Alan: I'm so miserable. Jill: How can you be miserable? You've got a good place to live, plenty to eat, nice clothes.... Alan: But man does not live by bread alone.
go it alone
Undertake a project, trip, or responsibility without the aid or presence of others. For example, If you decide not to help, I'll just go it alone. [Mid-1800s]
laugh and the world laughs with you
Keep your sense of humor and people will sympathize with you, as in She's always cheerful and has dozens of friends; laugh and the world laughs with you. This expression actually is part of an ancient Latin saying that concludes, weep and the world weeps with you. The current version, with the ending weep and you weep alone (meaning "you'll get no sympathy in your sorrow"), first appeared in 1883 in Ella Wilcox's poem "Solitude." O. Henry used a slightly different version: "Laugh, and the world laughs with you; weep, and they give you the laugh" ( The Count and the Wedding Guest, 1907).
leave someone alone
Also, let someone alone. Refrain from disturbing or interfering with someone. For example, She'll manage very well if you just leave her alone, or Stop teasing the dog; let him alone. [c. 1400] Also see leave one in peace; let alone; let be.
leave well enough alone
Also, let well enough alone. Do not try to change something lest you make it worse. For example, This recipe has turned out fine in the past, so leave well enough alone. The idea behind this expression dates from ancient Greek times, specifically Aesop's fable about a fox who refused a hedgehog's offer to take out its ticks lest, by removing those that are full, other hungry ones will replace them. Put as let well alone from the early 1700s, it was first recorded as let well enough alone in 1827. Also see let sleeping dogs lie.
1. See leave someone alone.
2. Not to mention, as in We have no room for another house guest, let alone an entire family. [c. 1800]
leave well alone
If you leave well alone, you do not interfere in something, because it is all right as it is and you might make it worse. He knew when to leave well alone and when to interfere. Gordon knows his business, he says, and I should just leave well alone.
man cannot live by bread alonepeople have spiritual as well as physical needs.
This phrase comes from Matthew 4:4 (quoting Deuteronomy 8:3), where the passage continues ‘but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God’.
go it aloneact by yourself, without support or assistance.
leave well alonerefrain from interfering in or changing something, for fear of making it worse.
go it aˈlone(informal) do something, especially something difficult, without the help or support of others: Andrew decided to go it alone and start his own business.
leave/let somebody aˈlone,
leave/let somebody ˈbestop annoying somebody or trying to get their attention: She’s asked to be left alone but the press photographers follow her everywhere. ♢ Leave him be — he obviously doesn’t want to talk about it.
leave/let something aˈlone,
leave/let something ˈbestop touching, changing or moving something: I’ve told you before — leave my things alone!
let aˈloneused after a statement to emphasize that because the first thing is not true or possible, the next thing cannot be true or possible either: I wouldn’t speak to him, let alone trust him or lend him money. ♢ She didn’t even apologize, let alone offer to pay for the damage.
leave/let well aˈlone(British English) (American English let well enough aˈlone) not try to change something or get involved in something: Arguments between other couples should be let well alone.
Not to mention; much less: "Their ancestors had been dirt poor and never saw royalty, let alone hung around with them" (Garrison Keillor).