Posted by James Briggs on February 14, 2004
In Reply to: Put yourself out posted by ESC on February 13, 2004
: : : : : : When my granny and mother were angry, they would say that they were "put out." "I am very put out with you right now!" I just used that expression and the class asked me what it meant and where it came from. I gave them the above explanation saying that I thought it was Irish or British. I then realized that another form of "to put out" means something entirely different here in the States. Any help here?
: : : : : : Thanks!
: : : : : Your UK and Irish use is certainly the only one I've ever heard or used here in the UK.
: : : : : However, it's quite possible to 'put out' the cat for the night! I guess you don't mean this use.
: : : : In West Virginia, we used "put out" to mean annoyed, etc. Also, it means "don't go to any trouble." You might tell a hostess, "Don't put yourself out on my account."
: : : In California, "put out" and "put yourself out" have the meanings that ESC reported for West Virginia. "Put out" also has the sexual meaning that you alluded to in your query.
: : One entry found for put out.
: : Main Entry: put out
: : Function: verb
: : transitive senses
: : 1 : EXTINGUISH
: : 2 : EXERT, USE
: : 3 : PUBLISH, ISSUE
: : 4 : to produce for sale
: : 5 a : DISCONCERT, EMBARRASS b : ANNOY, IRRITATE c : INCONVENIENCE
: : 6 : to cause to be out (as in baseball or cricket)
: : intransitive senses
: : 1 : to set out from shore
: : 2 : to make an effort
: : 3 : to engage in sexual intercourse
: "Put out" means for leaves or grass to come out or sprout. It also means to "work hard" or "study diligently," according to ?Dictionary of American Regional English,? Volume IV by Frederic G. Cassidy. DARE doesn't address the other meanings.
You're quite right! In the UK too it also means 'don't go to too much trouble'. I'd forgotten.