square off

Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal, Financial, Idioms, Encyclopedia.


1. A polygon having four equal sides and four equal angles.
2. Something having an equal-sided rectangular form: a square of cloth.
3. A T-shaped or L-shaped instrument for drawing or testing right angles.
4. Mathematics The product obtained when a number or quantity is multiplied by itself: 49 is the square of 7.
5. Games Any of the quadrilateral spaces on a board, as in chess.
a. Abbr. Sq. An open, usually four-sided area at the intersection of two or more streets, often planted with grass and trees for use as a park.
b. A rectangular space enclosed by streets and occupied by buildings; a block.
7. The flower bud of a cotton plant, with three bracts surrounding the unopened flower in a pyramidal structure.
8. Slang A person who is regarded as dull, rigidly conventional, and out of touch with current trends.
adj. squar·er, squar·est
1. Having four equal sides and four right angles.
2. Forming a right angle.
3. In alignment or flush: Put the paper square with the edge of the desk.
a. Abbr. sq. Expressed in units measuring area: square feet.
b. Having a specified length in each of two equal dimensions: a room that is 12 feet square.
5. Having a base that is a square: a square pyramid.
6. Nautical Set at right angles to the mast and keel. Used of the yards of a square-rigged ship.
7. Approximately rectangular and equilateral in cross section: a square house.
8. Characterized by blocklike solidity or sturdiness.
9. Honest; direct: a square answer.
10. Just; equitable: a square deal.
11. Having all accounts settled; even: I paid what I owed you, so we're square.
12. Sports Even; tied.
13. Slang Rigidly conventional; dull.
v. squared, squar·ing, squares
1. To cut to a square or rectangular shape. Often used with off.
2. To test or adjust for conformity to a desired plane, straight line, or right angle.
3. To mark into squares. Often used with off.
a. To bring into conformity or agreement: She could not square the request with her principles.
b. To bring (oneself) into a better position or relation: He tried to square himself with his parents.
5. To set straight or at approximate right angles: square one's cap.
6. To bring into balance; settle: square a debt.
7. Sports To even the score of: to square a game.
8. Mathematics
a. To raise (a number or quantity) to the second power.
b. To find a square equal in area to (the area of a given figure).
9. Informal To bribe or fix: a party in litigation that tried to square the judge.
1. Mathematics To be at right angles.
2. To agree or conform: a story that doesn't square with the facts.
1. Mathematics At right angles.
2. In a square shape.
3. In a solid manner; firmly.
4. Directly; straight: ran square into each other.
5. In an honest, straightforward manner.
Phrasal Verbs:
square away
1. Nautical To square the yards of a sailing vessel.
2. To put away or in order.
square off
To assume a fighting stance; prepare to fight.
square up
To settle a bill or debt.
on the square
1. Mathematics At right angles.
2. Honestly and openly: has always dealt on the square.
out of square
1. Mathematics Not at exact right angles.
2. Not in agreement.
square peg in a round hole Informal
A misfit.
three squares a day Informal
Three square meals eaten in a day.

[Middle English, from Old French esquarre, from Vulgar Latin *exquadra, from *exquadrāre, to square : Latin ex-, ex- + quadrāre, to give a square shape to (from quadrum, a square; see kwetwer- in Indo-European roots).]

square′ness n.
squar′er n.

square off

(intr, adverb) to assume a posture of offence or defence, as in boxing
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.square off - settle conclusively; come to terms; "We finally settled the argument"
solve, clear - settle, as of a debt; "clear a debt"; "solve an old debt"
concert - settle by agreement; "concert one's differences"
clinch - settle conclusively; "clinch a deal"
resolve, conclude - reach a conclusion after a discussion or deliberation
compromise - settle by concession

w>square off

vt sep
(= make square) cornerrechtwinklig machen
(= draw squares on)in Quadrate einteilen
vi (esp US) → in Kampfstellung gehen, Kampfstellung annehmen
References in classic literature ?
a hundred yards above the hotel the railway divided; one track went straight up the steep hill, the other one turned square off to the right, with a very slight grade.
The 31-year-old speed-eating demon defeated reigning champion Joey Chestnut in the Krystal Square Off World Hamburger Eating Championship in Chattanooga, Tennessee, reports the Daily Express.
The pair will square off at the aston arena on march 14 in a fight to be televised live on iTV4.
1 : to form with right angles, straight edges, and flat surfaces <I need to square off the boards.
James Aaron of Ansell, Zaro, Grimm & Aaron, and Peter Wegener, of Bathgate, Wegener & Wolf, will square off in a "Live Legal Debate," moderated by John Reilly of Farer Fersko.
BOXING: Miguel Espino (12-2-1, four knockouts) of North Hollywood will square off with Rigoberto Placencia (7-6-1, three KOs) of North Hills via Mexico tonight in the middleweight main event at the Burbank Hilton.
Much of the allure of these drawings stems from the pursedlipped schoolboy earnestness with which they seem to have been executed, while the complexity of each work--the minute formations preparing to square off in Boys' Art #24: Siege of Antibes, 1592, 2003, for example, or the battalions of horses and elephants charging into chaos in Boys' Art #8: Battle of Panipat, 1739, 2003--suggests an aesthetic meditation parallel in its intensity to the sense of portent that must have underscored the battles themselves.
Out songsmith Desmond Child could score with his Ricky Martin megahit "Livin' La Vida Loca" and the album Ricky Martin, which square off with mom-of-a-lesbian Cher's single "Believe' and album of the same name for Record of the Year and Best Pop Album, respectively.
Joey Chestnut, Takeru Kobayashi, Patrick Bertoletti and all of the world's top gustatory athletes to square off for the largest cash purse in competitive eating history, a whopping $50,000