“To give a person his congé” is to dismiss him from your
service. “To take one's congé” is to give notice to friends of your
departure. This is done by leaving a card at the friend's house with
the letters P.P.C. (pour prendre congé) inscribed on the
left-hand corner. (French, donner congé and donner à son
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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