shake off

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shake off

1. To rid or free oneself from someone or something that one finds aggravating, upsetting, or annoying. A noun or pronoun can be used between "shake" and "off." My little brother has been following me around all day. I need to shake him off. He had a hard time shaking off the feeling that someone was spying on him.
2. To shake something in order to get something off of it. A noun or pronoun can be used between "shake" and "off." I had to shake off the old tarp to get the bugs and dirt off of it. Shake the blanket off before you lay it out.
3. To dislodge or get rid of something by shaking. A noun or pronoun can be used between "shake" and "off." He tried to shake the tick off, but it had dug itself into his skin. Don't shake the mud off inside—go out in the back yard and do it!
4. To recover from or fend off a disease or illness, especially a minor one. A noun or pronoun can be used between "shake" and "off." I've got to shake this tummy bug off—I can't afford to be sick before our big meeting! I've had this cold for nearly a week that I just can't seem to shake off! I could feel myself getting sick, but I managed to shake it off.
See also: off, shake
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

shake a disease or illness off

Fig. [for the body] to fight off a disease or illness. I thought I was catching a cold, but I guess I shook it off. I hope I can shake off this flu pretty soon.
See also: disease, illness, off, shake

shake someone or something off

Fig. to get rid of someone; to get free of someone who is bothering you. Stop bothering me! What do I have to do to shake you off? I wish I could shake off John. He's such a pest!
See also: off, shake

shake something off

to get rid of something that is on one by shaking. (See also shake a disease or illness off.) I tried to shake the spider off. The dog shook off the blanket Billy had put on him.
See also: off, shake
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

shake off

Free oneself or get rid of something or someone, as in I've had a hard time shaking off this cold, or She forged ahead, shaking off all the other runners. It is also put as give someone the shake, as in We managed to give our pursuers the shake. The first term dates from the late 1300s; the slangy variant dates from the second half of the 1800s.
See also: off, shake
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

shake off

1. To shake something so as to dislodge what is on it: We shook off the picnic blanket to get rid of the grasshoppers. I picked up the beach towel and shook it off.
2. To get rid of something by shaking: The dog climbed out of the creek and shook off the water. I shook the snow off my jacket and hung it up.
3. To free oneself of something; get rid of something: We shook off our fear and proceeded into the dark cave. The injured player shook the pain off and continued to play.
See also: off, shake
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.
See also:
References in classic literature ?
He was no longer trying to shake us off, and now he dropped his curses also, and stood chuckling to himself instead.
The next two minutes I spent trying to stay steady in the back seat as we chased the quad bike and the rider did everything he could to shake us off.
Leeds scorer Mel Sterland said: "You won't shake us off." He was right, as the Yorkshire club clinched the title by four points from the Reds.
We used different cars and different reporters but each time the clean-shaven man would shake us off and slip away.
"People are not going to shake us off easily," said Abbott.
"Alvaro is 16-under and trying to shake us off, but I'm up there," said Stenson.
"Louis is 16 under and he's trying to shake us off, but definitely, I'm up there," said Stenson, whose form over the Doha Golf Course could yet see him come through on the rails.
Anyway, neither Leeds nor Forest can shake us off. We are in a tough little patch of games at the moment and are doing okay.
And if that does not shake us off, they put us through to a call centre on the other side of the world where the poorly paid staff are equipped only to read out pre-determined answers to a handful of blindingly obvious questions.
It's our own fearful thoughts that all-too-often shake us off the beam-our own muddled thinking, such as: "What if I don't please my bosses?
'I've been around long enough to know that this sort of attitude is vitally important and if we can stay in the right frame of mind,Falkirk won't shake us off easily.'
Some of the private cars that had travelled on the same boat as us charged ahead to shake us off -- in vain.
And, presumably to shake us off, he swapped his usual Porsche Carrera for a Renault Laguna.
"We will still be favourites with the bookmakers to go down because we are still third from bottom but I've not got a problem with that as long as we are still in there worrying people who can't shake us off," said Strachan.
"We knew the travel agent she was using in Luton, the fact that she flew from Luton airport to Gibraltar to try to shake us off, and which phone line she used to stay in touch with him."