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Hi, everybody. My name is Alisha. Welcome back to Know Your Verbs. In this episode, we're going to talk about the verb, "cut." Let's get started.
So, the basic definition of the verb, "to cut," is to make something smaller or to open something using a sharp tool, like a knife or scissors or something else pointy.
Let's look at the conjugations of this verb. Present tense, cut/cuts. Past tense, cut. Past participle tense, cut. Progressive tense, cutting.
Okay. So, now, let's take a look at some additional meanings of this verb. The first additional meaning is to make something smaller. To make something smaller. But, this can mean conceptually, or it can refer to the amount of something, not only the size of something. Examples, "The company had to cut costs." "You should probably cut your hair." So, in both of these, we're seeing examples of things that became smaller. In the first sentence, "The company had to cut costs." So, to cut costs means to decrease costs, to reduce costs, to make the costs smaller. So, we say "cut costs." In the second sentence, it's about hair. So, we just say "to cut hair." In this case, yes, we're talking about something pointy, a sharp tool, that's fine. But, we're making hair smaller, so we say, "to cut hair."
The second additional meaning for the verb, to cut, is to remove something. To remove something from something else. So, examples of this, "I cut some mistakes from the radio show." "She's cutting the damaged parts out of the fabric." So, in both of these sentences, you'll see we use the verb, "cut," with "from" or "out of." In the first example sentence, "I cut some mistakes from the radio show," means in the radio show, the original radio show, there were some mistakes. "I cut the mistakes," so I removed the mistakes from the radio show. So, we use "from," or we can use "out of." Both are fine, as in the second example sentence, "she cut the damaged parts out of the fabric." So, in that sentence, we see "out of" instead. We could say "she's cutting the damaged parts from the fabric." Both are okay. It just means we're removing the damaged parts, in that case. So, removing something from something else.
Okay. Let's go to the third meaning for the verb. The third meaning is to stop something or to cause something to stop. Examples, "Can you cut the engine?" "Oh, no. They cut the power." So, here, stop. We're not physically cutting something, and we're not removing anything here. Here, we're talking about cutting, maybe, energy source, or we're talking about cutting an action, if you can imagine that. So, stopping an action, causing something to stop. In the first example sentence, it's an engine. "Cut the engine" means stop the engine or make the engine stop, in other words. In the second example sentence, "Oh, no. They cut the power," means, oh, no, they stopped the power or they turned off the power. Maybe, it's the electrical company. "Power" means electricity. So, "they turned off the electricity," but we usually say, "cut the power." We can use this for computers, for machines, anything that can start and stop, really. Cut something.
The fourth meaning for this verb is to move across or through a place. Examples of this, "Let's cut across the soccer field." "Can we cut through the tunnel?" So, here, we see "cut" with "across" and "cut through." So, we use "cut across" when we're talking about moving physically, like across an open area. So, we could say "cut across the street," "cut across the field," "cut across the road," maybe, but with "through," we're going into something, we're going inside something. So, "cut through the tunnel," for example, or, "cut through the house," or, "cut through the shopping mall." So, entering something, to come out the other side, through. So, we can use "across" and "through." So, those are some common examples of expressions we use with "cut" in this way, meaning to go across something.
Okay. Let's move on to some variations for this verb. The first variation for this verb is "to be cut out for something." "To be cut out for something" means to be suited for something. This is an expression we commonly use in the negative form, actually. Let's look at some examples. "I'm not cut out for the pace of this work." "He's not cut out for life in the city." So, as you can see, we use this with "not" in many cases. So, in the first example, "I'm not cut out for the pace of this work," means I'm not suited to the pace of this work. It's not a good match for me and my personality, my lifestyle, for example. In the second example sentence, "He's not cut out for life in the city," it means life in the city does not suit him. It doesn't match him very well. So, to not be cut out for something is probably more common than to be cut out for something.
The second variation is "to cut somebody off." "To cut somebody off" means to interrupt someone or to stop them from doing an activity. We often use this with driving, with drinking, also, in speaking. Yeah. So, driving, drinking, and speaking are common situations where we use this. In speaking, we use it when we interrupt someone. So, examples, "The bartender cut off the noisy couple in the restaurant." "Somebody cut me off on the highway."
One more example, too, is when we're talking about money, especially with parents and children. Here's an example, "His parents are going to cut him off when he turns 35."
So, in all of these, we're seeing "cut off" but, actually, each of these presents a different use. In the first example, it's a bartender. So, the sentence was "The bartender cut off the noisy couple." "Cut off," here, we know it means interrupts; but the key, actually, to the meaning is "bartender" here. "Bartender" as the subject suggests that the couple are drinking in the restaurant. So, to cut off some people at a bar means to stop serving drinks, to stop serving alcoholic drinks. So, when a bartender or restaurant staff cuts off someone who is drinking, it means they stop serving that person or those people alcoholic drinks. So, that's one meaning of to cut someone off. In the second example sentence, "Somebody cut me off on the highway." This is very, very common in driving. When you are driving along in your car, I'll put this here, okay, you're driving along in your car, but, quickly, somebody else comes near you and drives in front of you, very quickly, like interrupting you. Maybe, you have to touch your brakes or you have to stop, or you have to move something that surprises you. So, we say this motion, this activity when driving is cutting someone off. So, it's like you're causing an interruption in the driver's activity. So, there's some interruption that happens. This other car disrupts your activity or interrupts your activity. So, we say this person, Car B, cut me off on the highway.
In the third example, it's about money. "His parents say they're going to cut him off when he turns 35." This is an expression that means they're going to cut him off financially. In other words, when he turns 35, his parents are going to stop giving him money. So, there are a few expressions here that we have to really think about the situation to understand what is being stopped. Is it drinks? Is it driving? Is it money? We can also use it when speaking. If someone interrupts you when speaking, you can say, "Ah, don't cut me off. I'm trying to talk."
The next variation for this verb is "to cut to the chase." To cut to the chase. This is an expression which means to explain the main point of something, to explain the main idea of something. Examples, "Hurry up and cut to the chase." "He won't cut to the chase and explain what he wants." So, quite simply, "cut to the chase" means to explain the main idea. So, in the first example sentence, "Hurry up and cut to the chase," means hurry up and explain the thing you want to say. So, if someone is saying many, many different things but won't say the main point, you can use this expression, "Hurry up and cut to the chase." In the second example sentence, "He won't cut to the chase and explain what he wants," means, again, he's saying a lot of different things but he won't just say the thing he does want to say or the thing needs to say. So, we can say "cut to the chase" to make a request of him.
So, those are a few, maybe, new ways to use the verb, "cut." I hope you found something new or interesting here. Of course, if you have any questions or comments, or want to try making a sentence with this verb, please feel free to do so in the comment section of this video. Thanks very much for watching this episode of Know Your Verbs and we'll see you again soon. Bye-bye!