The word off can be used as an adverb and a preposition.
Off as an adverb
As an adverb, off modifies the verb.
Study the examples given below.
- He drove off.
- His village is a long way off.
As a preposition
When off is used as a preposition, it is followed by a noun which acts as its object.
- We will get off the train at the next station.
Off can also be used as an adjective. When food items go off, they become unfit for consumption.
- I think the meat has gone off.
When you have an off day, you don’t have to go to work.
Expressions using the word off
To set off is to leave a place.
- With only $50 in his pocket, he set off on his journey.
To be off is to go away.
- He told me to be off.
Be off to
When you are off to some place, you are going there.
- I am off to Mexico next Friday.
To get off a plane, train or bus is to leave it.
- As the driver didn’t stop the bus, we couldn’t get off.
When you are off something, you are not on the surface of it after being on it for some time.
- Please get the cat off the piano.
- The wind blew the cap off his head.
To keep off or stay off something is to stay away from it.
- Keep off the grass.
Off can also mean ‘close to something’.
- The bookstall is off the main road. (= It is near the main road, but it is not on it.)