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break a lance

To engage in a competition, battle, or confrontation, usually with someone or something. The newly elected congresswoman broke a lance with the House of Representatives today on the issue of discrimination in business. The faction sought to break a lance with the government as a means of securing greater autonomy.
See also: break, lance

lance the boil

take decisive action to put an end to an undesirable situation.
The underlying image is of a boil being cut open with a lancet or other sharp surgical instrument, to release its pus.
2003 Yorkshire Post Today Mr Conway … said…it was time for Mr Duncan Smith to ‘lance the boil’ in his leadership. ‘There's a growing feeling of “it's got to end”.’
See also: boil, lance

lance through

1. To pierce through something or someone: My spear lanced through the fish.
2. To permeate something or someone thoroughly and sharply: Pain lanced through the runner's body during the marathon.
See also: lance, through