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Quick answer
"Back off" is an intransitive verb phrase which is often translated as "echarse atrás", and "back out" is an intransitive verb phrase which is also often translated as "echarse atrás". Learn more about the difference between "back off" and "back out" below.
back off(
bahk
 
af
)
An intransitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and does not require a direct object (e.g. Everybody please stand up.).
intransitive verb phrase
1. (to abandon a stance)
a. echarse atrás
We decided to back off from our proposal because it would've been too costly.Decidimos echarnos atrás de nuestra propuesta, porque habría sido demasiado costosa.
2.
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
(to retreat)
a. retroceder
Don't come any closer. Back off or I'll shoot.No se acerquen. Retrocedan o disparo.
3. (to stop harassing someone)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
It's been a long day. Please, just back off.Ha sido un largo día. Por favor, déjame en paz.
What's with all the questions? Back off already.¿Por qué tantas preguntas? Déjame de una vez.
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back out(
bahk
 
aut
)
An intransitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and does not require a direct object (e.g. Everybody please stand up.).
intransitive verb phrase
1. (to withdraw)
a. echarse atrás
He said he was going to help make dinner, and then he backed out.Dijo que iba a ayudar a preparar la cena y luego se echó atrás.
b. volverse atrás
Robert backed out of the fight when he learned who he'd be boxing.Robert se volvió atrás de la pelea cuando se enteró de con quién iba a boxear.
c. retirarse
I don't feel safe in this neighborhood anymore and I may back out of my lease agreement.Ya no me siento seguro en este barrio y a lo mejor me retiro de mi contrato de arrendamiento.
2. (auotmobile)
a. salir marcha atrás
Stephanie backed out of the garage and drove to work.Stephanie salió marcha atrás del garaje y se dirigió al trabajo.
b. salir de reversa
Regionalism used in Colombia
(Colombia)
Regionalism used in Mexico
(Mexico)
The bus couldn't fit in the tunnel, so it backed out.El camión no cabía en el túnel, por lo que salió de reversa.
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