buy off

(redirected from bought them off)

buy off

To pay someone to coerce them into doing something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "buy" and "off." Don't worry, the doorman won't say anything—I bought him off. Her campaign for mayor will be ruined if the public learns how many people she's bought off over the years.
See also: buy, off

buy someone off

to bribe someone to ignore what one is doing wrong. Do you think you can buy her off? The mobster tried to buy off the jury.
See also: buy, off

buy off

Pay to get rid of a claim or opposition, or to avoid prosecution, as in He was caught trying to buy off the opposing candidate. [First half of 1600s]
See also: buy, off

buy off

v.
To bribe someone in order to ensure cooperation: I didn't get a speeding ticket because I bought off the police officer. The mobster avoided jail by buying the judge off.
See also: buy, off
References in classic literature ?
Why, because he has an understanding with the merchants; he's bought them off.
Ms Oreck bought them off with about pounds 150 and "some really cheap fried chicken".
Parents of a man who killed himself after taking a cocktail of drugs are taking action against the websites he bought them off.
Initially she claimed she had bought them off holiday-makers but later admitted keeping them for someone else.