Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
1. To distribute. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "deal" and "out." Deal out the itinerary so we can see which landmark we're visiting first.
2. To exclude one from something. The phrase likely originated from card games, in which cards are distributed among the players by "dealing" them. In this usage, the excluded person is typically stated between "deal" and "out." If you guys are going to keep playing poker, then deal me out—I have to get something upstairs. Bobby isn't going to the conference anymore, so deal him out of this project.
deal something out
to pass something out piece by piece, giving everyone equal shares. The manager dealt the proposals out, giving each person an equal number to read. I'll deal out some more proposals.
1. Distribute, as in He dealt out more and more work. [Late 1300s] Also see deal in, def. 3.
2. deal someone out. Exclude someone, as in I don't have time for this project, so deal me out. This usage is the opposite of deal in, def. 3.
1. To exclude someone from a card game by not giving that player cards: Deal me out—I have to go to the bathroom.
2. To distribute something to someone: The dealer dealt the cards out. The politician dealt out pamphlets explaining her position on the issues. Deal out another hand; I'm ready to play.