lay the ghost of (something) to rest

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lay the ghost of (something) to rest

To do something that finally eliminates one's long-held fears, worries, or distress about something that happened in the past. New DNA evidence in the decades-old investigation finally laid the ghost of these accusations to rest for Mr. Jones. It wasn't until I got my new job that I could finally lay the ghost of my departure from the bureau to rest.
See also: ghost, lay, of, rest

lay the ghost of something

If you lay the ghost of something bad in your past, you do something which stops you being upset or affected by it. Jockey Maguire laid the ghost of a terrible week with a triumphant win in the Irish Champion Hurdle yesterday. Note: You can also say that you lay to rest the ghost of something with the same meaning. Timmis seems to have laid to rest the ghost of her unhappy 1992 campaign when she failed to make the Olympic team.
See also: ghost, lay, of, something

lay a (or the) ghost

get rid of a distressing, frightening, or worrying memory or thought.
The image here is of exorcizing an unquiet or evil spirit.
See also: ghost, lay