out of order


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out of order

 
1. Lit. [of something or things] out of the proper sequence. She noticed that the books on the shelf were out of order. All these cards were alphabetized, and now they're out of order.
2. Fig. [of something] incapable of operating; [of something] broken. The elevator is out of order again. My stereo is out of order.
3. Fig. not following correct parliamentary procedure. I was declared out of order by the chair. Anne inquired, "Isn't a motion to table the question out of order at this time?"
See also: of, order, out

out of order

1. Not functioning well, not operating properly or at all, as in The oil burner is out of order again. [Mid-1500s]
2. Unsuitable, inappropriate, as in Her comments about the management were out of order. Also see out of line, def. 1.
3. Not following parliamentary procedure, as in The chair called him out of order.
See also: of, order, out

out of order

COMMON
1. A machine or device that is out of order is broken and does not work. Their phone's out of order. Inside, the lift was out of order so she took the stairs.
2. If you say that someone or their behaviour is out of order, you mean that their behaviour is unacceptable or unfair. You don't think the paper's a bit out of order in publishing it? Hey, sorry, I was a bit out of order yesterday.
See also: of, order, out