run (someone or something) to ground

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run (someone or something) to ground

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 ground. The record is quite rare, but I managed to run a copy to ground at a flea market in Atlanta.
See also: ground, run, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

run someone to ground

BRITISH
If you run someone to ground, you find them after a long search. The thief was eventually run to ground in a garden shed. Compare with run someone to earth. Note: In hunting, this expression is used to refer to a fox being chased back to its hole.
See also: ground, run, someone, to
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

run somebody/something to ˈearth/ˈground

(informal) find somebody/something after a long, difficult search: I spent years looking for the stolen picture but eventually ran it to ground in London.The escaped prisoner was run to ground within a couple of days.
This comes from hunting and means to chase an animal to its earth (= its home or hiding place).
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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