set in motion

(redirected from put in motion)
Also found in: Legal.

set (something) in motion

To cause something to begin. The legislation was set in motion by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to set the project in motion.
See also: motion, set

set the wheels in motion

To cause something to begin. The wheels were set in motion for stricter gun laws by a senator from New Hampshire. We've been planning the details for months, but it's ultimately up to the boss to set the wheels in motion.
See also: motion, set, wheel

set something in motion

to start something moving. The mayor set the project in motion by digging the first shovelful of soil. I cannot set the procedure in motion until I receive a purchase order.
See also: motion, set

set in motion

Start something moving, give impetus to something, as in A press conference set the new project in motion. It is also put as set the wheels in motion, as in Let's set the wheels in motion for the new library wing. This idiom dates from about 1800. It was preceded by put in motion, which dates from the mid-1600s.
See also: motion, set

put/set something in ˈmotion

(also set the wheels in ˈmotion) do what is necessary to make a start on a project, plan, meeting, etc: The Government wants to put the new reforms in motion before the election.It will be many years before we see any results, but at least we know that the wheels are in motion.
This expression refers to starting a large and complicated piece of machinery.
See also: motion, put, set, something

set in motion

To give impetus to: The indictment set the judicial process in motion.
See also: motion, set
References in classic literature ?
I will, in this place, hazard an observation, which will not be the less just because to some it may appear new; which is, that the more the operations of the national authority are intermingled in the ordinary exercise of government, the more the citizens are accustomed to meet with it in the common occurrences of their political life, the more it is familiarized to their sight and to their feelings, the further it enters into those objects which touch the most sensible chords and put in motion the most active springs of the human heart, the greater will be the probability that it will conciliate the respect and attachment of the community.
Certain machinery in the body of the nun on the leads over the door was cleaned up and put in motion, so that the figure shook its head paralytically all day long, to the great admiration of a drunken, but very Protestant, barber over the way, who looked upon the said paralytic motion as typical of the degrading effect wrought upon the human mind by the ceremonies of the Romish Church and discoursed upon that theme with great eloquence and morality.
The screw was immediately put in motion, and the log gave twenty miles an hour.
The carriage was put in motion as slowly as a funeral car.
It was not without its method, however; for, in a very short space of time after being put in motion, the crowd had resolved itself into three great parties, and were prepared, as had been arranged, to cross the river by different bridges, and make for the House of Commons in separate detachments.
Cardenio hung the buckler on one side of the bow of Rocinante's saddle and the basin on the other, and by signs commanded Sancho to mount his ass and take Rocinante's bridle, and at each side of the cart he placed two officers with their muskets; but before the cart was put in motion, out came the landlady and her daughter and Maritornes to bid Don Quixote farewell, pretending to weep with grief at his misfortune; and to them Don Quixote said: