take apart(redirected from taken someone apart)
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!
1. To disassemble something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "take" and "apart." Suzy loves taking electronics apart and figuring out how to put them back together again.
2. To destroy something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "take" and "apart." The storm took the house apart overnight.
3. To beat or thrash someone severely and thoroughly. A noun or pronoun can be used between "take" and "apart." He acted tough, but he got taken apart by the two brothers. The mugger didn't realize his victim was a martial arts expert, and she completely took him apart.
4. To decisively defeat someone. A noun or pronoun can be used between "take" and "apart." They have taken apart Cleveland's defense this half. If you underestimate her, she will take you apart during the debate.
5. To be extremely critical of someone or something through careful, thorough analysis. A noun or pronoun can be used between "take" and "apart." She completely took apart his book in front of the entire audience, leaving him looking like a fool. The boss took her apart for bungling up the accounts.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
take someone apart
1. Sl. to beat someone up. (See also take something apart.) Don't talk to me that way, or I'll take you apart. He was so mad that I thought he was going to take apart all of us.
2. Inf. to criticize or defame someone or something. They really took me apart, but I just ignore bad reviews. The editorial took apart the entire city government.
take something apart
1. Lit. to disassemble something. (See also take someone apart.) Bobby took his bicycle apart. You take apart everything that is mechanical.
2. Fig. to damage or ruin something. The wreck took both cars apart. The high wind took apart the roof and the fence.
3. Fig. to criticize something severely. The critic took the play apart. The teacher took apart John's essay in front of the class.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Dismantle or disassemble, as in They had to take apart the stereo before they could move it. This usage was first recorded in 1936.
2. Examine thoroughly, analyze or dissect, as in The teacher embarrassed Tom by taking his thesis apart in front of the class. [Mid-1900s]
3. Beat up, thrash, as in You'd better be careful; those boys will take you apart. [Slang; mid-1900s]
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.
take someone/something apart
If you take apart a person, idea or argument, you criticize them strongly by explaining their faults. He proceeded to take apart every preconception anyone might have ever had about him. The committee took her apart, criticizing every aspect of her work.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
take someone or something apart1 dismantle something. 2 defeat someone or something conclusively. 3 criticize someone or something severely. informal
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
1. To disconnect the parts of something; disassemble something: I took apart the radio to find out what was wrong. The plumber took the drain apart to fix it.
2. To dissect or analyze something in an effort to understand it: He took apart my theory and found a few flaws. The professor took my conclusions apart and said they were invalid.
3. To criticize something or someone severely: The boss didn't like my report much and really took it apart. The committee took apart my budget as being too wasteful.
4. Slang To beat someone severely; thrash someone: I'm going to take you apart in this fight. Go take apart that bully!
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.
take someone/something apart
1. tv. to criticize or defame someone or something. They really took me apart, but what the hell?
2. tv. to beat or damage someone or something. The mugger really took the old lady apart.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.