Shift v. t. [imp. & p. p. Shifted; p. pr. & vb. n. Shifting.]
1. To divide; to distribute; to apportion. [Obs.]
To which God of his bounty would shift
Crowns two of flowers well smelling. --Chaucer.
2. To change the place of; to move or remove from one place to another; as, to shift a burden from one shoulder to another; to shift the blame.
Hastily he schifte him[self]. --Piers Plowman.
Pare saffron between the two St. Mary's days,
Or set or go shift it that knowest the ways. --Tusser.
3. To change the position of; to alter the bearings of; to turn; as, to shift the helm or sails.
Carrying the oar loose, [they] shift it hither and thither at pleasure. --Sir W. Raleigh.
4. To exchange for another of the same class; to remove and to put some similar thing in its place; to change; as, to shift the clothes; to shift the scenes.
I would advise you to shift a shirt. --Shak.
5. To change the clothing of; -- used reflexively. [Obs.]
As it were to ride day and night; and . . . not to have patience to shift me. --Shak.
6. To put off or out of the way by some expedient. “I shifted him away.”
To shift off, to delay; to defer; to put off; to lay aside.
To shift the scene, to change the locality or the surroundings, as in a play or a story.
Shift the scene for half an hour;
Time and place are in thy power. --Swift.