blaze (the/a) trail

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blaze (the/a) trail

1. Literally, to create a trail by clearing trees and vegetation or simply by marking trees. Does anyone know who blazed the trail through these woods back in the 18th century?
2. By extension, to be the first to do something, often that which is later emulated or built upon by others. I hope that the rest of my family will move to the West Coast if I blaze the trail and relocate there first. The forefathers of medicine blazed a trail for today's doctors.
See also: blaze, trail

blaze a trail

 
1. Lit. to make and mark a trail. The scout blazed a trail through the forest.
2. Fig. to do early or pioneering work that others will follow up on. Professor Williams blazed a trail in the study of physics.
See also: blaze, trail

blaze a trail

Find a new path or method; begin a new undertaking. For example, His research blazed a trail for new kinds of gene therapy. This expression was first used literally in the 18th century for the practice of marking a forest trail by making blazes, that is, marking trees with notches or chips in the bark. [Late 1800s]
See also: blaze, trail

blaze a trail

or

blaze the trail

COMMON If someone blazes a trail or blazes the trail, they are the first person to do or discover something new and important, and this makes it easier for other people to do the same thing. With his first book Parker has blazed a new trail in American literature. The party is blazing the trail for the advancement of women in politics. Note: You can use trail-blazing to describe someone who does something new and important or to describe the thing that they do. Many companies are happy to follow in the shadow of a trail-blazing competitor. This trail-blazing study went into immense detail on the habits of pub-goers. Note: People or organizations who act like this can be called trail-blazers and what they do is called trail-blazing. They are trail-blazers who took on a man's world and made it theirs. Despite all his trail-blazing, he spent most of his life looking back to the works of Chaucer and Edmund Spenser. Note: New trails or routes through forests were often marked by `blazing', which involved making white marks called `blazes' on tree trunks, usually by chipping off a piece of bark.
See also: blaze, trail

blaze a trail

be the first to do something and so set an example for others to follow.
Blaze in this sense comes ultimately from an Old Norse noun meaning ‘a white mark on a horse's face’. In its literal sense, blazing a trail refers to the practice of making white marks on trees by chipping off bits of their bark, thereby indicating your route to those who are following you.
See also: blaze, trail

blaze a/the ˈtrail

be the first to do something important or interesting: As the first female Member of Parliament, she blazed a trail for others to follow. ▶ ˈtrailblazer noun a person who is the first to do or discover something and so makes it possible for others to follow: a trailblazer in the field of genetic engineering ˈtrailblazing adj.: trailblazing scientific researchThe original meaning of this expression was to cut marks (=blazes) into trees so that others could follow the path you had taken through a forest, etc.
See also: blaze, trail
References in classic literature ?
which rescued the unknown painter from oblivion and blazed the trail which succeeding writers, with more or less docility, have followed.
Frankie Dettori blazed the trail on Echo Of Light, who galloped on too strongly for the rest.
Far from being the antithesis of today's federal leviathan, Fields and Peckham blazed the trail for it.
She and teammates Brittany Clay, Randee Whitney and Nicci Leon, all 17, said they were impressed by the history of their sport at Hart, as well as the women who blazed the trail for them.
Previous campaign spokesman and champion bull rider Owen Washburn blazed the trail in 2005 with personal appearances and a breakthrough television commercial that broadcast in key markets nationwide.
He also thanked African-Americans who blazed the trail in the LAPD and city government, including Jessie Brewer.
I am proud to be associated with an organization that has not only blazed the trail in the past, but continues to deliver innovative environmental solutions for customers and other stakeholders.
XM blazed the trail for portable satellite radio products with XM2Go.
We are proud to have blazed the trail in Ultra320 SCSI-based solid state flash storage, and this latest development further raises the bar and illustrates our company's commitment in bringing Ultimate Storage Solutions(TM) to reality," Bruce adds.
While larger enterprises licensing MDM software have blazed the trail so far, the market will ultimately be lead by SME's seeking competitive advantage and cost reduction leveraging less expensive smartphones and personal productivity solutions like email available from operators.
Jonathan Yantis is an entrepreneur who blazed the trail in creating a market for the exchange of virtual currency and property," said Brock Pierce, CEO of IGE U.
This is the company that has blazed the trail in the industry and is the leading VoiceXML platform vendor with the most number of standards-based and VoIP-based deployments.
who foresaw how the digital age would transform business, and in his founding of Modem Media he blazed the trail for legions of interactive marketers.
For close to two decades, FreeBalance has blazed the trail to eGovernment.
Incurrent is proud to deploy our CardSite solution for Sears, the company that blazed the trail for the retail credit card market," said Loren Hulber, Incurrent's Chairman and CEO.