get by


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get by

(on a small amount of money) to survive with only a small amount of money. I can't get by on that much money. That is a very small amount of money to live on. No one could get by.
See also: get

get by

(someone or something) to move past someone or something. I need to get by this intersection, and then I will stop and look at the tires. Please let me get by.
See also: get

get by

 (with something)
1. to satisfy the minimum requirements. I was failing geometry, but managed to get by with a D. I took the bar exam and just barely got by.
2. Go to get away with something.
See also: get

get by (without someone or something)

to survive without someone or something. I can't get by without you. We can probably get by without two cars.
See also: get

get someone or something by someone or something

 and get someone or something by
to get someone or something past an inspection. Do you think I can get my cousin by the border guards? I don't think I can get this sausage by the customs desk.
See also: get

get by

to exist and have just enough of what you need I think a lot of families can't get by with just one salary. He gets by on snacks.
Usage notes: often followed by with or on, as in the examples
See also: get

get by

1. Move past, as in There isn't room for this car to get by.
2. Manage to succeed or get along; also, barely succeed. For example, He's getting by even though he only works half-time, or If he applied himself, Paul could be getting A's, but instead he's just getting by. [Early 1900s]
3. Be unnoticed; also, get approval or pass inspection. For example, I wonder if these errors will get by the proofreader, or He hoped the paint job would get by. [Early 1900s]
See also: get

get by

v.
1. To find a way past or around something: The store was so crowded that it was hard to get by the entranceway.
2. To go unnoticed or ignored by someone: The mistake got by the editor, but the proofreader caught it.
3. To cause something to pass unnoticed or ignored by someone: The smuggler failed to get the drugs by the inspector.
4. To succeed at a level of minimal acceptability or with the minimal amount of effort: When I was in college I just barely got by. There's no way to get by with just half a bottle of cream for the dessert tonight.
5. To succeed in managing; survive: We can get by if we save our money carefully.
See also: get