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1. To look through, examine, or analyze something with careful attention. A noun or pronoun can be used between "pick" and "over." I picked over the charity shop, hoping to find something I might wear. They're going to pick over your thesis line by line, looking for any mistakes or inconsistencies that might be present.
2. To search or look over something thoroughly in order to select and remove the best parts. A noun or pronoun can be used between "pick" and "over." There was not much left after the birds had picked over the field of grain. Everyone had already picked the table over by the time I got there, so all that was left were a couple pieces of bread.
Having the best things or parts already taken or removed; only having less desirable parts or things left over. During the big Black Friday sales, you'd better get to the stores first thing in the morning, because they're all picked over come lunch time. I was looking forward to my dinner after having to work so late, but the plates of leftovers were picked over by the time I got back.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
rejected; worn, dirty, or undesirable. This merchandise looks worn and picked over. I don't want any of it. Everything in the store is picked over by the end of the month.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.