count off

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count off

1. To count in turn, as when dividing a group of people into smaller groups. A noun or pronoun can be used between "count" and "off." OK, kids, count off one through five so that we can make five groups.
2. To count the number of people or things in a group to ensure that everyone or everything is present. A noun or pronoun can be used between "count" and "off." Kids, take your seats on the bus so that I can count off and make sure everyone is here.
3. To count out loud so that everyone in a group starts something (such as a song or dance) at the same time. A noun or pronoun can be used between "count" and "off." Before launching into their routine, the cheerleaders counted off, "Five, six, seven, eight!"
4. To subtract from something, such as a score. A noun or pronoun can be used between "count" and "off." I had to count off five points for presentation because your project was a glue-covered mess.
5. To divide a group of things into smaller groups. A noun or pronoun can be used between "count" and "off." I counted off the batch of cookies so that each of the neighbors would get the same amount.
See also: count, off

count someone or something off

to count people or things, to see if they are all there. (See also count off.) Let's count them off to see who's missing. Count off each person, one by one. I counted each one off.
See also: count, off

count off

[for a series of people, one by one] to say aloud the next number in a fixed sequence. The soldiers counted off by threes. The sergeant told them to count off.
See also: count, off

count off

1. Count aloud from one end of a line of persons to the other, each person counting in turn. For example, The soldiers counted off one by one. This usage and the practice it describes come from the military.
2. Place in a separate group by counting, as in The office counted off the telephone books for each delivery route.
See also: count, off

count off

v.
1. To recite numbers in turn, as when dividing people or things into groups: The 24 children counted off by twos, forming a dozen pairs.
2. To count to an agreed upon number so that some group begins an activity at the same time: The conductor counted the band off, and they began to play. The director counted off the choir, and they began to sing. The conductor counted off, and the band began to play.
3. To decrease the score or evaluation of someone by some amount: The professor will count you off five points if you skip a class.
4. To deduct some amount from a score or evaluation: The teacher counted off one point for each mistake. The Olympic judges counted a tenth of a point off for the gymnast's wobbly landing. The teacher counts off for misspelled words.
See also: count, off
References in classic literature ?
`Well, there was Mystery,' the Mock Turtle replied, counting off the subjects on his flappers, `--Mystery, ancient and modern, with Seaography: then Drawling--the Drawling-master was an old conger-eel, that used to come once a week: HE taught us Drawling, Stretching, and Fainting in Coils.'
One of them raised his hand and lowered it, as though counting off seconds--one--two--three!
'Well, there's the Horse-fly,' Alice began, counting off the names on her fingers.
In the calm of the hard frost outside, the clear- cut strokes of the town clock counting off midnight penetrated the quietness of his suspended animation.
In counting off the debts owed by way of lessons learned, Artbermido is a testament of how no artist lives in a vacuum.
Combined with the fact that the rut was yet to start, and that the temperature was supposed to climb to 90 degrees, I sat in a trance, counting off the hours to departure.
The average Kenyan reading this today is already counting off the excuses for all the personages named above.
One boy was allegedly reduced to tears after his teacher asked if he was "going for a poo or wee" before counting off a number of sheets for him.
By the time of going to press, counting off the ballots was still going on in the National Assembly.
Before he joined the court, his "life had been a counting off of days of dust and sun." Now he has a sense of purpose, a place in the world.
The subtension marks alternate between .7- and 1.5-MOA wide, so counting off holdovers is easy.
Flat ones for skipping, counting off the bounces in competition with each other.
As a member of the 4th Scout Rangers Batallion in Tipo-Tipo, Basilan, in 2010, Panganiban said they would always hear of Japanese soldiers counting off while marching in their outposts at midnight.
Some, I suspect after a protest hiatus; many, like me, just a continuation of marking another line on the wall like the imprisoned Count of Monte Cristo counting off the days until he can savour wrongs being righted.
Just a year ago we were counting off the minutes in a long goal drought stretched over eight games and 11 barren hours so it is only fair to put the stopwatch on the clean sheet kings too.