keep (one's) distance

(redirected from keep our distance)

keep (one's) distance

1. To maintain physical distance between oneself and someone or something. Keep your distance, everyone. There is a downed wire here. He better keep his distance from that bear.
2. To limit engagement or association (or the appearance thereof) between oneself and someone or something. Politicians have been quick to keep their distance from the senator ever since news of her scandal broke.
See also: distance, keep

keep one's distance (from someone or something)

Fig. to maintain a respectful or cautious distance from someone or something. Keep your distance from John. He's in a bad mood. Keep your distance from the fire.
See also: distance, keep

keep one's distance

Stay away; also, remain emotionally remote. For example, It's wise to keep one's distance from any wild animal, or Since the family argued with him, Harry's been keeping his distance. [Late 1500s]
See also: distance, keep

keep your ˈdistance (from somebody/something)


keep somebody/something at a ˈdistance

not be too friendly or familiar with somebody/something: She tends to keep her distance from her neighbours, so none of them know her very well.
See also: distance, keep
References in classic literature ?
What we had to do was to keep our distance till dark, which we could manage easily, and then haul off to seaward and consider the situation.
Thanks to Channel 4's latest reality show we can all see how they get on, and best of all we can keep our distance from those gastropods knowing they wont be eating our petunias.
Observes former Nixon administration staffer Charles Colson, "One of the reasons I have written books and given speeches warning Christian leaders not to be seduced by the wiles and the attractiveness of power in the White House, and to keep our distance and never mix the gospel with politics, is that I saw how well I exploited religious leaders when I was in that job.