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1. To cover something with something else. A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "over." We put posters over the graffiti on the sides of the school. Make sure you don't put tape over the address on the box, or it might not reach its destination.
2. To complete a task successfully, especially when a positive outcome initially seems or seemed unlikely. A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "over." It's miraculous that we put the presentation over—we only finished writing it five minutes before walking into the conference room! I'm determined to put over any challenge they give me.
3. To render someone or something understandable, relatable, or acceptable (to others). A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "over." I'm trying to put over the finer details of the plan to the board of directors. He's behind in the polls because no one knows who he is or what he stands for—we need to put him over to the public at large.
4. To delay, defer, or postpone something to a later date or time. A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "over," though it is often used in the The judge put the trial over for two weeks to allow lawyers on both sides to examine new evidence. My board meeting was put over until July.
put someone or something over
to succeed in making someone or something be accepted. The public relations expert helped put John over to the public. Do you think we can put this new product over?
put something over
to accomplish something; to put something across. (See also put someone or something over.) This is a very hard thing to explain to a large audience. I hope I can put over the main points. This is a big request for money. I go before the board of directors this afternoon, and I hope I can put it over.
1. Make successful, bring off, as in Do you think we can put over this play? [Early 1900s]
2. Make something or someone be understood or accepted, as in The public relations staff helped put our candidate over to the public. [Early 1900s]
3. put over on. Fool, deceive, as in We can't put anything over on Tom. [Early 1900s]
4. Delay, postpone, as in The meeting was put over until tomorrow. [Early 1500s] Also see put off.