leave (someone or something) behind

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leave (someone or something) behind

1. To depart (from some place) without bringing someone or something. We decided to leave the kids behind when we go to Paris this spring so we can have a bit of time to ourselves. I can't believe I left my passport behind! I hope they still let me on the plane.
2. To abandon or forsake someone or something. I can't believe he left his family behind to pursue a career in acting. I left behind teaching to focus on writing my novel.
See also: behind, leave

leave someone or something behind

to fail or forget to bring someone or something along. John was sick, so we had to leave him behind. Oh, I left my money behind.
See also: behind, leave

leave behind

v.
1. To depart from some place, especially in order to begin a new stage of a journey: We left Paris behind and went on to Warsaw.
2. To abandon, neglect, or forego someone or something: I can't believe you would leave behind your whole family. We boarded the plane to Tahiti and left all our troubles behind. The teacher was afraid that the younger students were getting left behind.
3. To have someone or something remaining after one's death: When she died, she left behind two young children. Many of the soldiers who died in the war left families behind. The actor left behind a legacy when he died.
4. To depart or disappear, leaving something as a result: When the glacier receded, it left behind many small lakes.
5. To surpass someone or something: This new product will leave the competition behind.
See also: behind, leave