take the air

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take the air

old-fashioned To spend time outdoors. You've been cooped up inside reading all day long—why not go into the garden and take the air for a spell?
See also: air, take

take the air

go out of doors.
See also: air, take
References in classic literature ?
Instead of the generous spread of surface with which it had taken the air, it was now a lean and hawklike monoplane balanced on long and exceedingly narrow wings.
Tim Linkinwater's sister lamented; the housekeeper condoled; and both kept thrusting their heads out of the second-floor window to see if the boy was 'coming'--which would have been highly satisfactory, and, upon the whole, tantamount to his being come, as the distance to the corner was not quite five yards--when, all of a sudden, and when he was least expected, the messenger, carrying the bandbox with elaborate caution, appeared in an exactly opposite direction, puffing and panting for breath, and flushed with recent exercise; as well he might be; for he had taken the air, in the first instance, behind a hackney coach that went to Camberwell, and had followed two Punches afterwards and had seen the Stilts home to their own door.
It has taken the air ambulance just six years to notch up 8,000 missions since its launch in October 2003.
Still others asked why it had taken the Air Force so long to come clean, as it were.