Get Axed: Definition, Meaning, and Origin

Last Updated on
September 13, 2023

The expression "get axed" vividly portrays someone being dismissed or terminated, often abruptly or unexpectedly. It paints a picture of a swift action, similar to how an axe would chop or cut something down. This idiom can be used in diverse contexts, from discussing professional layoffs to being removed from a team or project. Essentially, it's a way of saying, "Someone was suddenly let go, or something was abruptly terminated."

In short:

  • "Get axed" means to be dismissed from a job or position, often suddenly or unexpectedly.

What Does "Get Axed" Mean?

The idiom "get axed" is often used to describe someone losing their job or position, especially surprisingly or abruptly. But where does this expression come from, and how is it used today?

  • The primary meaning is to be laid off or fired from a job.
  • In informal contexts, it can also mean being dropped or removed from a team, group, or project.
  • Occasionally, it might refer to something being abruptly canceled or terminated.

While it predominantly carries negative connotations, its use can vary based on context.

Where Does "Get Axed" Come From?

The origin of "get axed" is linked to the tool "axe." Historically, an axe was used for cutting down trees or chopping wood, indicating a swift and forceful action.

Historical Usage

"Following the merger, many employees at the lower tier found themselves getting axed."

Such usage over time evolved to symbolize the abrupt removal or dismissal from a position or job, hence the connection to job terminations today.

10 Examples of "Get Axed" in Sentences

Here are ten sentences showcasing the different ways "get axed" can be used:

  • The editor decided to get axed from the writing team after numerous errors.
  • Even though Jake got axed from his previous job, his iron will keep him moving forward, undeterred in his search for a better position.
  • They had to get axed from the project due to insufficient funds.
  • When Emily got axed from the project, she didn't even bat an eye, immediately diving into a new assignment enthusiastically.
  • If we don't meet our targets, we might get axed.
  • That design was total kack, so it had to get axed.
  • When the curveball of budget cuts came, many of Tim's projects got axed. I hope all goes well for him and he finds a new opportunity soon.
  • I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but several team members will get axed due to the company's downsizing.
  • "After years of dedication, I didn't expect to get axed just like that," lamented Karen, to which her colleague replied, "Well said. It's truly unfair how they handled it."
  • As they attempted to integrate the new software, some features got axed.

Examples of "Get Axed" in Pop Culture

"Get axed" has also made its mark in popular culture, especially in movies, TV shows, and literature that touch upon workplace dynamics.

Some notable mentions include:

  • In the TV series The Office, characters often fear they'll get axed during company-wide cutbacks.
  • A popular reality TV show, You're Fired, revolves around contestants trying to avoid getting axed from business challenges.
  • The phrase got axed was humorously used in an advertisement for a famous job search website, emphasizing the need for a quick job change.

Other/Different Ways to Say "Get Axed"

Apart from "get axed," several other expressions convey the same or a similar sentiment:

  • Get fired
  • Be laid off
  • Get the boot
  • Be shown the door
  • Get the sack
  • Be dismissed
  • Be terminated

10 Frequently Asked Questions About "Get Axed":

  • What does "get axed" mean?

"Get axed" primarily refers to being dismissed from a job, often abruptly.

  • Where did the idiom "get axed" originate?

It's linked to the tool "axe", representing a swift and forceful action, which over time came to symbolize abrupt dismissals or terminations.

  • Is "get axed" a negative phrase?

Generally, yes. It usually indicates an unexpected or undesirable removal from a position or role.

  • Can "get axed" refer to non-professional situations?

Yes, it can be used informally to mean being removed from a team, group, or even an event.

  • Is it common to hear this idiom in everyday conversations?

While it's more prevalent in professional contexts, it's not uncommon in casual conversations, especially when discussing jobs or projects.

  • How is "get axed" different from "get fired"?

Both phrases mean dismissal from a job, but "get axed" often emphasizes a sudden or unexpected termination.

  • Is "get axed" used globally or specific to certain regions?

While its origins might be English, the phrase is understood in many parts of the world, especially where English is spoken.

  • Can companies "get axed"?

In the context of projects or deals, yes. A company might say their project "got axed" if it was suddenly canceled.

  • Is it formal to use "get axed" in professional settings?

It's less formal than terms like "dismissed" or "terminated". It's always good to gauge the appropriateness based on the setting.

  • Can "get axed" be used positively?

Rarely. Most usages carry negative implications, though context can sometimes lend a neutral or humorous tone.

Final Thoughts About "Get Axed"

"Get axed" is a vivid expression emphasizing abrupt termination or dismissal. Whether discussing someone's unexpected job loss, the sudden end of a project, or joking about being left out of plans, "get axed" conveys the idea of being swiftly cut off or removed from a situation.

  • It primarily means being laid off or fired from a job.
  • The idiom has its roots in the historical use of the axe as a tool.
  • While it carries negative connotations, context can sometimes offer a more neutral or humorous interpretation.

Understanding idioms like "get axed" enriches our comprehension and use of English, allowing for more dynamic and expressive communication.

We encourage you to share this article on Twitter and Facebook. Just click those two links - you'll see why.

It's important to share the news to spread the truth. Most people won't.

U.S Dictionary is the premier dictionary about the English language as used in the United States of America.
Copyright © 2024 - U.S. Dictionary
Privacy Policy