lay waste


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lay waste (to something)

to destroy something Last night, rabbits laid waste to the lettuce I was going to pick today. The army laid waste to the countryside as it moved south.
See also: lay, waste

lay waste

Ravage, ruin, as in The hurricane laid waste the entire seashore. Originally referring to the devastation caused by attackers, this term has come to be used more generally.
See also: lay, waste

lay waste

To ravage: Rebel troops laid waste the town.
See also: lay, waste
References in periodicals archive ?
In foreign policy, we'd ordinarily expect to find GOP hawks standing up for America's interests, while dithering Democrats lay waste their talents with Wilsonian skylarking.
A Birmingham councillor has called for a group of travellers to be evicted before they lay waste to one of the city's showpiece parks.
Before the "follow the money" phrase was ever coined, an earlier pundit by the name of William Wordsworth observed, "Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers.
The Giant is threatening to lay waste to Flintshire and Jack has to find the crock of gold.
O Lord our God, help us to tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their patriot dead; help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of their wounded writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes with the hurricane of fire .
It had to be destroyed because the only way of ensuring the final end of the Nazi state was to lay waste the centre of Berlin with British bombers and Soviet artillery.
The UVB rays lay waste to basal cells, one type of cell that divides to produce new skin.
The question is, are we doomed--through some irreversible cultural overlay or perhaps a deep-seated genetic characteristic--to continue unceasingly to lay waste the forests again and again, with the replacement forest each time a bit less well adapted to its environment, a bit more susceptible to attacks by insects, pathogens, pollution, and environmental changes?
These media-sponsored surveys often lay waste to all the methodologies and questionnaire-construction techniques that can make public opinion polls (when used responsibly and in the right set of circumstances) an accurate barometer of public attitudes.