branch off

Idioms & Phrases

branch off

Diverge, subdivide, as in It's the house on the left, just after the road branches off, or English and Dutch branched off from an older parent language, West Germanic. This term alludes to a tree's growth pattern, in which branches grow in separate directions from the main trunk. [Second half of 1800s] Also see branch out.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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