find out(redirected from found them out)
1. To learn something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "find" and "out." Guess what I found out? Greg is getting the promotion after all! You know, I'm not sure what his phone number is, but I'll find out for you.
2. To learn of or expose someone's misleading, deceptive, or underhanded actions or intentions. A noun or pronoun can be used between "find" and "out." Well, don't leave any evidence behind, or they'll find you out.
3. To discover that someone is not home. A noun or pronoun can be used between "find" and "out." Yeah, I tried to go visit Sheila, but I found her out.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
find someone out
1. to discover that someone is not at home. We knocked on their door and found them out. Sam found Frank out when he arrived to collect the debt.
2. to discover something surprising or shocking about someone. I don't want them to find me out. We found her out despite her deviousness.
find something out
to discover facts about someone or something; to learn a fact. I found something out that you might be interested in. We found out that the Smiths are going to sell their house.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Discover through examination or inquiry, as in You can find out his phone number by looking in the book. [Mid-1500]
2. Expose, detect the true nature or character of, especially in an offense. For example, Cheaters risk being found out. [c. 1700]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. To ascertain something, as through examination or inquiry: I found out the phone number by looking it up. We found the answer out in the dictionary. I'm not sure of the location of the bus stop, but I'll try to find out.
2. To detect or expose the true nature or character of something or someone: My plan to trick my roommate ended when he found me out. Liars risk being found out.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.