get the drift

get the drift

also catch the drift
to understand in a general way what someone is telling you I usually read the first page of a report just to get the drift.
Usage notes: sometimes used in the form get someone's drift: She said something about going home, but Len didn't get her drift at the time.
See also: drift, get

get the drift

Also, catch the drift. Understand the general meaning or purport. For example, I didn't get the drift-do they want to go or not? or Over all the noise he barely managed to catch the drift of their conversation. The noun drift has been used for "purport" since the early 1500s.
See also: drift, get