clear the deck(s)

(redirected from clears the deck)

clear the deck(s)

1. Literally, of sailors, to prepare for something (such as a battle) by removing or securing objects on the deck of a ship. That enemy ship is getting too close—clear the deck!
2. By extension, to cease doing something in preparation for a more important task or happening. I know you're busy with that paperwork, but clear the decks—I've got a big client coming in this afternoon.
3. To flee hastily; to depart quickly Uh oh, here comes mean old Mr. Jerome. Clear the decks, everyone! The staff cleared the decks when they saw the boss asking for volunteers to work on the weekend.
See also: clear

clear the decks

 
1. Lit. [for everyone] leave the deck of a ship and prepare for action. (A naval expression urging seaman to stow gear and prepare for battle or other action.) An attack is coming. Clear the decks.
2. Fig. get out of the way; get out of this area. Clear the decks! Here comes the teacher. Clear the decks and take your seats.
See also: clear, deck

clear the decks

Prepare for action, as in I've finished all these memos and cleared the decks for your project, or Clear the decks-here comes the coach. This expression originated in naval warfare, when it described preparing for battle by removing or fastening down all loose objects on the ship's decks. [Second half of 1800s]
See also: clear, deck

clear the decks

mainly BRITISH or

clear the deck

AMERICAN
COMMON If someone clears the decks, they finish what they are doing so that they are ready to start doing something else. The British commanders had wanted to clear the decks for possible large-scale military operations. Clear the decks before you think of taking on any more responsibilities. Note: In the past, all unnecessary objects were cleared off the decks or floors of a warship before a battle, so that the crew could move around more easily.
See also: clear, deck

clear the decks

prepare for a particular event or goal by dealing beforehand with anything that might hinder progress.
In the literal sense, clear the decks meant to remove obstacles or unwanted items from the decks of a ship before a battle at sea.
See also: clear, deck

clear the ˈdeck(s)

get ready for some activity by first dealing with anything not essential to it: We had been doing some painting in the dining room, so we had to spend some time clearing the decks before our visitors came round in the evening.
See also: clear, deck

clear the deck

Informal
To prepare for action.
See also: clear, deck
References in periodicals archive ?
I think this clears the deck for the next step in Friends' evolution," said Fox-Pitt, Kelton analyst Raghu Hariharan.
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MARCOS ANGELERI, looks highly likely to be the next Stadium of Light departure as Martin O'Neill clears the decks at Sunderland.
PORTSMOUTH have been given permission to speak to Newcastle defender Andy O'Brien as Graeme Souness clears the decks for his summer signings.
CHESTER City manager Keith Curle is set to release 20 of the 29 players he inherited when he joined the club, as he clears the decks in readiness for a promotion push next season.
Home Secretary Charles Clarke yesterday warned he would hold the opposition parties to blame if the Government was forced to abandon two central planks of its crime legislation as it clears the decks for a general election.
It clears the decks with regards to pay and conditions, but we've got an obvious fight with Jaguar and Ford later on this year.
This disposal clears the decks and will enable us to exploit much more quickly the excellent opportunities for Kleeneze UK and Farepak.