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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce offhand (audio)

Dictionary definition of offhand

Done or said without much thought, preparation, or consideration.
"The speaker's offhand remark caused an awkward silence in the room."

Detailed meaning of offhand

When used to describe a remark, comment, or response, it implies that it was given casually, spontaneously, and without careful deliberation. An "offhand" remark typically lacks polish, formality, or tact, as it is often delivered in a casual or unguarded manner. The term suggests a lack of seriousness or depth, indicating that the statement was made without much prior reflection or intention to be precise or accurate. While an "offhand" remark can sometimes be dismissive or flippant, it can also reflect a relaxed or informal attitude in a conversation or interaction. Overall, the adjective "offhand" conveys a sense of spontaneity and informality in speech or action, highlighting the lack of premeditation or consideration in the given context.

Example sentences containing offhand

1. She made an offhand comment about the weather without really thinking.
2. He gave an offhand response to the question, not realizing its significance.
3. I can't remember offhand where I put my keys.
4. The professor provided an offhand explanation of the concept without going into much detail.
5. She dismissed the idea with an offhand wave of her hand.
6. He made an offhand joke that lightened the mood in the room.

History and etymology of offhand

The adjective 'offhand' has its etymological origins in the English language. It is a compound word formed by combining 'off' and 'hand.' The word 'off' in this context implies 'away' or 'at a distance,' and 'hand' represents the physical act of doing something. Therefore, the etymology of 'offhand' conveys the idea of doing or saying something away from one's hand or without much thought, preparation, or consideration. When someone is described as being offhand, it means they are behaving or speaking in a casual, spontaneous manner, often without giving careful thought to their words or actions. This term reflects the concept of something being done without much effort or prior planning, as implied by its compound nature.

Quiz: Find the meaning of offhand

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Further usage examples of offhand

1. The salesperson gave an offhand response when asked about the product's warranty.
2. The chef prepared an offhand dish using the available ingredients.
3. The coach made an offhand comment about the team's performance during the press conference.
4. I can't give you an answer offhand, but I'll look it up for you.
5. The child gave an offhand response to his parent's question, not fully comprehending it.
6. She offered an offhand suggestion for the weekend plans.
7. The employee gave an offhand excuse for being late to work.
8. He made an offhand remark about the movie, not realizing it was his friend's favorite.
9. His offhand remark offended some people at the gathering.
10. She gave an offhand response when asked about her plans.
11. The offhand decision to go camping turned into an adventure.
12. His offhand joke brought laughter to the tense meeting.
13. She made an offhand comment about the weather changing.
14. The offhand remark sparked a heated debate among friends.
15. An offhand suggestion led to an impromptu road trip.
16. His offhand remark revealed his true feelings on the matter.
17. She dismissed his question with an offhand wave of her hand.
18. The offhand apology lacked sincerity and regret.
19. An offhand attitude won't get you far in this profession.
20. He made an offhand gesture to indicate his disinterest.
21. The offhand dismissal of their concerns angered the group.
22. She spoke in an offhand manner, as if she didn't care.
23. An offhand decision to try a new restaurant surprised them.
24. His offhand response left the interviewer unimpressed.
25. She delivered an offhand explanation for her absence.
26. The offhand way he treated his colleagues was disrespectful.
27. An offhand text message led to a misunderstanding.
28. His offhand approach to problem-solving proved ineffective.



casual, deliberate, thoughtful, planned


TOEFL 13, High School 11, Middle School 13

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