run (someone or something) to earth

run (someone or something) to earth

To succeed in tracking down the location of someone or something after an extensive or exhaustive search. After nearly three months of searching, we finally ran the suspects to earth, hiding half-dead in a filthy hovel. The record is quite rare, but I managed to run a copy to earth at a flea market in a flea market in Atlanta.
See also: earth, run

run someone or something to earth

to find something after a search. Lisa finally ran her long-lost cousin to earth in Paris. After months of searching, I ran a copy of Jim's book to earth.
See also: earth, run

run to earth

Also, run to ground. Track down, find, as in Somehow we have to run those relatives of hers to earth, or It won't be easy, but I'm sure we can run that jewelry to ground. This expression comes from hunting, where hounds run their quarry to the earth or ground, that is, to their lair. Its figurative use dates from the mid-1800s.
See also: earth, run

run someone to earth

BRITISH
If you run someone to earth, you find them after a long search. Last month, he was run to earth by Greenpeace at his home in Bridgehampton. Compare with run someone to ground. Note: A fox's hole is called an earth. In hunting, this expression is used to refer to a fox being chased back to its earth.
See also: earth, run