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1. verb To physically place something on someone or something. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "lay" and "over." If you lay the baby's favorite blanket over her, she should stop crying. Once we lay over the crust, we'll put it in the over.
2. verb To stop briefly in a journey before continuing on to another destination. I'm going to lay over in Dallas on my way home.
3. verb To delay or postpone something. You know, we can lay over some of this work until tomorrow—we don't have to do it all today.
4. noun A brief stop in a journey before continuing on to one's final destination. In this usage, the phrase is usually written as one word. I have a layover in Dallas on my way home.
lay something over someone or something
to cover someone or something with something. Here, lay this blanket over the baby. Please lay a napkin over the bread before you take it to the table.
lay over (some place)
to pause some place during one's journey. I had to lay over in San Antonio for a few hours before my plane left. I want a bus that goes straight through. I don't want to lay over.
1. Postpone, as in This issue will have to be laid over until our next meeting. [Late 1800s]
2. Make a stop in the course of a journey, as in They had to lay over for two days in New Delhi until the next flight to Katmandu. This sense gave rise to the noun lay-over for such a stopover. [Late 1800s]
To temporarily interrupt or delay someone's journey in order to rest, refuel, do repairs, or change vehicles. Used chiefly in the passive: Because it was snowing, we were laid over in Albany for four hours.