sweep off(redirected from sweep them off)
1. To clean or clear something by brushing its surface very lightly and quickly, as with a broom or brush. A noun or pronoun can be used between "sweep" and "off." Please sweep the patio off before our guests arrive. She swept off the ancient tombstone so she could decipher the inscriptions.
2. To clear something off (of someone or something) with a quick brushing movement. A noun or pronoun can be used between "sweep" and "off." Don't eat in here anymore, OK? I hate having to sweep all these crumbs off the bed. He swept off the dust that had gotten all over his new suit.
3. To clear, drive, or convey someone or something off (of something or some place) with quick, powerful, and relentless force. A noun or pronoun is used between "sweep" and "off." A huge wave crashed onto the bridge, sweeping dozens of people off and carrying them out to sea. Hurricane-force winds have been sweeping cars right off the street.
4. To take or escort someone away (from or to some place) very swiftly, abruptly, or unexpectedly. A noun or pronoun is used between "sweep" and "off." The secret police began sweeping political dissidents off to unknown locations, never to be heard from again. Security personnel swept the protestors off the stage after they had had attempted to disrupt the ceremony.
5. To bring someone on a trip or excursion (to some place) in a very romantic or exciting fashion. A noun or pronoun is used between "sweep" and "off." Dan is sweeping me off to Florence for our anniversary next week. The company had a limousine ready to sweep us off to the gala event.
sweep something off (of) somethingand sweep something off
to remove something by sweeping. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) The waiter swept the crumbs off the tablecloth. He swept off the crumbs.
to exit quickly. He stopped only briefly, then swept off again. Mary swept off, leaving Ted standing there confused.