give back

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give back

1. To return or restore something to someone or something. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "give" and "back." Give me back my sweater, you brat! Did I ever give you your pen back?
2. To act in a charitable manner, often by donating money or volunteering. I like to give back to my community by working with other volunteers to clean up our local parks.
See also: back, give
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

give someone or something back (to someone or something)

to return someone or something to someone or something. Please give it back to me. You took my lunch away from me. You had better give it back. Give back the book right now!
See also: back, give

give something back

 (to someone) (with interest)
1. Lit. to return money to someone with an additional amount for interest. You are going to have to give that money back to me with interest. Please give back the proper amount... with interest!
2. Fig. to return something to someone in excess of what was received. We will give back all your kindness to you with interest. We will give it all back with interest.
See also: back, give
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

give back

To return something: Don't forget to give the books back when you're done with them. I gave back the hammer when the job was done.
See also: back, give
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
But for fun, they established the new privilege of wearing "comfortable clothes" on Give Back days.
Cong said the company feels it's important to give back to the community because it's the area the company and many of its employees call home.
Employees and customers not only encourage companies to give back but expect it of them.
It's a nice feeling to be able to 'give back?, help others, and transfer knowledge.
Why have I been trying to give back to it for the last 36 years?
Orchard Meadows Family Dental marketing director Daniela Stetser said, "We have the capability to give back to them.
In an interview with Vogue magazine, Ferguson recalled her mother's words:"You're going to pay rent now, because you're a working woman who is earning more than me so you give back to the family."
12 (ANI): Flambouyant Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh has vowed to give back to the next generation in his new role as a Laureus Ambassador.
Yousif Al-Ali, MP Ahmad Al-Qudhaibi charged the minister for "having taken inappropriate decisions to give back gravel plots to their owners despite egregious violations to the conditions governing such give-back." MP Al-Qudhaibi said the minister "has committed several violations (regarding the gravel plots), requiring questioning him about them." He added that some of the plots ordered by the minister to be given back were sub-rented by their owners in what amounted to be a clear violation of rules and regulations.
"I have made a lifelong goal to always give back whenever I can."
Bank of Cyprus chairman Josef Ackermann said that he assumed a role in Cyprus's largest lender in order to give back to the Cypriot society after he played a role in Greece's 2011 debt restructuring which wiped out large amount of bank equity making a bailout necessary, the New York Times reported.
As part of Hollister Construction Services' ongoing effort to give back to the community, the Hollister team spent an afternoon volunteering at the Community FoodBank of New Jersey.
The American, dubbed Foxy Knoxy, promised to "give back" to those who helped with her seven-anda-half year legal battle in Italy by helping prisoners.
The American, dubbed Foxy Knoxy, promised to "give back" to those who aided her seven-and-a-half year legal battle in Italy by helping prisoners.
On this past Giving Tuesday, the day created three years ago to promote generosity instead of the consumerism of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the Financial Women's Association released a list of ways consumers and leaders in the financial industry can give back in the holiday season and throughout the year.