get by

verb
got by; got by or gotten by; getting by; gets by

Definition of get by

intransitive verb

1 : to succeed with the least possible effort or accomplishment
2 : to make ends meet : survive
3 : to proceed without being discovered, criticized, or punished

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of get by in a Sentence

working at night paid my college tuition and enabled me to get by—but just barely

First Known Use of get by

1841, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about get by

Statistics for get by

Time Traveler for get by

The first known use of get by was in 1841

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on get by

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for get by

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with get by

Nglish: Translation of get by for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of get by for Arabic Speakers

Comments on get by

What made you want to look up get by? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

strength of mind

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • pasta resembling wheels with spokes
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!