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Crossword clues for set off

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
set off

verbal phrase; see set (v.) + off (adv.). From 1590s as "make prominent by contrast," 1610s as "adorn." Intransitive sense of "start on a journey" is from 1774. Meaning "separate from contect" (in typography) is from 1824; sense of "ignite, discharge, cause to explode" is from 1810.

set off

vb. 1 (context idiomatic intransitive English) To leave; to begin a journey or trip. 2 (context idiomatic transitive English) To begin; to cause; to initiate. 3 (context idiomatic transitive English) To cause to explode. 4 (context idiomatic transitive English) To make angry. 5 (context idiomatic transitive English) To offset, to compensate for: to reduce the effect of, by having a contrary effect. 6 (context printing historical English) To deface or soil the next sheet; said of the ink on a freshly printed sheet, when another sheet comes in contact with it before it has had time to dry.

set off
  1. v. put in motion or move to act; "trigger a reaction"; "actuate the circuits" [syn: trip, actuate, trigger, activate, spark off, spark, trigger off, touch off]

  2. leave; "The family took off for Florida" [syn: depart, part, start, start out, set forth, set out, take off]

  3. direct attention to, as if by means of contrast; "This dress accentuates your nice figure!"; "I set off these words by brackets" [syn: bring out]

  4. cause to explode; "We exploded the nuclear bomb" [syn: explode, detonate, blow up]

  5. make up for; "His skills offset his opponent's superior strength" [syn: cancel, offset]

  6. set in motion or cause to begin; "The guide set the tour off to a good start"

  7. provoke or stir up; "incite a riot"; "set off great unrest among the people" [syn: incite, instigate, stir up]