What does "out" mean after words?

"work out"
"check out"
"point out"

  • 4
    Each is a separate idiom, with likely a separate origin. – Hot Licks Sep 24 '18 at 12:33
  • 1
    True, they are idioms, like most phrasal verbs. Still, there is a generic sense of "to completion" with many out constructions. Work out the problem means 'solve the problem', check out the acceleration means 'notice the acceleration', point out the mistake means 'identify the mistake'. Each of these refer to some action carried to completion, or at least to the next step in its completion. – John Lawler Sep 24 '18 at 13:46
  • @JohnLawler, that looks like an answer, not a comment. – The Photon Sep 24 '18 at 13:56

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