sweep away

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sweep away

1. Literally, to brush, push, or carry someone or something away. A noun or pronoun can be used between "sweep" and "away." The giant wave swept the entire road away. The hurricane's winds were so strong that they swept away entire buildings. He swept the papers away in anger.
2. To eliminate or dispose of someone or something quickly and decisively. A noun or pronoun can be used between "sweep" and "away." The returning champions have so far swept away every competitor with ease. The fracture in my leg swept my dreams of competing in the Olympics away in an instant.
See also: away, sweep

swept away

Awed or overwhelmed, typically in a positive way. We were simply swept away by the spectacle of the Grand Canyon, and ended up staying at the park much longer than we had planned.
See also: away, swept
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

sweep someone or something away

to dispose of someone or something by pushing or brushing away. The waves nearly swept us away. The waves caused by the storm swept away all the debris on the beach.
See also: away, sweep
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

sweep away

1. To cause someone or something to be carried away by or as if by a current: The storm swept away the dock. The tornado swept the barn away. I was so swept away by the music that I forgot where I was for a moment.
2. To eliminate something all at once: The accident swept away all my dreams. When the school rejected my admissions application, I felt like they had swept all my hard work away in a matter of seconds.
See also: away, sweep
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.
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References in classic literature ?
Whosoever met the dragoness, the day of doom would sweep him away, until the lord Apollo, who deals death from afar, shot a strong arrow at her.
The woman weighs anchor with the dog, which learns to cling to the deck with toenails and teeth, so a fierce gust or extra wild wave doesn't sweep him away. And so months pass, and oceans, and bridges, and years.
There is nothing cool about the eternal self-deception and pathetic self-justification of the true addict that Peter Doherty expresses, even as he sees himself descending further and further into the gutter which will eventually sweep him away.
Speaking on the current state of affairs on the Korean Peninsula, Jo said, "A new military plot (between the United States and South Korea) has created a tinderbox situation." "If the enemy provokes a war, we will annihilate and sweep him away without mercy with the unified strength of the entire military so that not a single person remains," Jo said.
Perhaps we should tell Tony Blair that he has already passed her record for being prime minister, and he could then bow out with dignity, rather than waiting for the tide of history to sweep him away.
DRAMATIC film of a cockle picker being plucked to safety from a sandbank as the tide threatened to sweep him away was watched by a jury yesterday.