'Cut it off', 'cut it out', etc


Allow me to ask a last question for today. :oops:

Phrasal verbs such as ‘Cut it off’ and ‘cut it out’ hold a ‘it’ in them. I guess the ‘it’ here has no particular meaning. But could you tell me how I should make up an image in my mind for it? I mean, does it really have no meaning at all (except for the sake of rhythm) or somewhat have hidden meanings such as ‘the thing you are talking or suggesting now’?



By ‘cut it out/off’, do you mean the informal phrase for ‘stop it’? In this case, the pronoun ‘it’ refers to whatever is annoying you and you are asking someone to stop doing.


The ubiquitous ‘it’ is in the imagination and mind of the speaker. Take a look at these woderful lyrics written by Cole Porter:


Hi Haihao

Now that we’ve got the word ‘it’ with the meaning of ‘fall in love’, let’s go back to your original examples:

Cut it out” means “Stop doing what you are doing” (It = what you are doing)

Cut it off.” may have been exactly what I told a nurse one time. I’d broken my wrist and when I got to the hospital, the nurse wanted to pull my sweater off so that I could put “hospital clothing” on. But pulling that sweater over my broken wrist was far too painful and I made her “cut it off” rather than pull it off. (It = sweater)


Thank you all. I guess I am made as clear as day. By the way,

Just one more relevant phrase: ‘have it in for’ (approx. = dislike)

In a certain context, how can I take this ‘it’ into my imagination?