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absent (oneself) from (some place)
To leave a place, often to avoid something. If my ex-boyfriend does come, I'm going to absent myself from the party. Are those sirens? We should really absent ourselves from here before the cops show up! I didn't want to get a lecture about my grades, so I was quick to absent myself from the living room when I heard Mom and Dad pull up outside.
absent (oneself) from (someone or something)
To avoid or stay away from someone or something. I had to absent myself from his presentation because the sight of him still makes me so angry. I didn't want to get a lecture about my grades, so I was quick to absent myself from Mom and Dad. We should really absent ourselves from the library before he sees us.
absent without leave
Not present for a duty or situation without permission. The phrase is usually used in reference to military service, and is often abbreviated with the acronym "AWOL." The young soldier was arrested for being absent without leave. I know you're new to the force, but you can't just go absent without leave like that. The boss thought I was absent without leave because I was too sick to call in and say that I needed to miss a day of work.
Forgetful or inattentive of everyday details or duties, possibly due to a preoccupation with other thoughts. My absent-minded housemate is always lost in composing new poems and never remembers to clean the house or take out the trash! Grandpa's been quite absent-minded lately, and I'm starting to wonder if he should be living alone anymore. I know Paulina's absent-minded, that's why I left the forms on her desk with a big note telling her to sign them and hand them in!
An otherwise intelligent person who often lacks common sense or forgets or overlooks important details. Louis is brilliant, but he's such an absent-minded professor when it comes to remembering to attend important meetings. A: "She graduated summa cum laude, yet she never remembers to turn in any of these forms on time." B: "Sounds like an absent-minded professor to me." Having an organized assistant is key when you're an absent-minded professor like me!
be absent without leave
To not be present for one's duty or a particular situation without permission. The phrase is usually used in reference to military service, and it is often abbreviated as the acronym "AWOL." The young soldier was arrested for being absent without leave. Jackie, you were absent without leave during our busiest period of the year. You're fired.
long absent, soon forgotten
The longer a person is not present, the easier they are to forget about. A: "Is Carrie really dating someone else now?" B: "You've been gone for months! Long absent, soon forgotten."
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
absent oneself from someone or something
to remain away from or avoid someone or some place. Fred absented himself from the meeting, which he was certain would be boring.
*absent without leave
absent from a military unit without permission; absent from anything without permission. (AWOL is an abbreviation. This is a serious offense in the military. *Typically: be ~; go ~.) The soldier was taken away by the military police because he was absent without leave.
a bumbling professor who overlooks everyday things. Fred is such an absent-minded professor. He'd forget his head if it wasn't screwed on.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
absent without leave
Away without permission or explanation, as in Her daughter went to the mall but got in trouble for being absent without leave. The term and its acronym, AWOL, originated in the American military during World War I for soldiers absent from duty without permission (leave). It later was transferred to civilian situations, as in John didn't just cut his Tuesday classes; he went AWOL.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.