fire off

Idioms & Phrases

fire off

Say or write and send away rapidly, as in He fired off three more questions, or She fired off a letter of complaint to the president. This expression originally (from about 1700) was, and still is, used in the sense of "discharge a weapon or ammunition," as in The police were instructed to fire off canisters of tear gas. The figurative use dates from the late 1800s.

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