pass it by / pass by it [surpass, outdo]

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Wookie

Senior Member
Korea, Korean
Once a dominant meat supplier, Argentina has watched as Brazil has passed it by, building the world’s largest beef export industry. Last year, even their tiny neighbor Uruguay exported more beef per capita than Argentina. (source)

I looked "pass by" up in the OED and it shows:
pass by (sb/sth)
to go past: The procession passed right by my front door.

According to the dictionary, I guess "pass by it" is correct but I'm not sure. It just sounds odd to me.
Which one is correct, pass it by or pass by it?
 
  • timpeac

    Senior Member
    English (England)
    In this context only "passed it by" is correct. In the literal sense of physically overtaking then you use "passed by it" - "there was a big oak tree at the corner of the street and James passed by it each day on his way to work".
     

    Wookie

    Senior Member
    Korea, Korean
    In this context only "passed it by" is correct. In the literal sense of physically overtaking then you use "passed by it" - "there was a big oak tree at the corner of the street and James passed by it each day on his way to work".
    Do you use "pass it by" in the sense of not physically overtaking?
     
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