tear through (something)
1. To perforate, lacerate, or rip through something with great speed or force. The child tore through the wrapping paper with manic excitement. I ended up tearing through the canvas as I tried to scrape some of the dried paint away.
2. To move through something or some place with great speed, especially in a headlong, reckless manner. It's no wonder you got hurt with the way you've been tearing through the kitchen like that! The burglar tore through the mall, with security guards in hot pursuit.
3. To cause a great amount of destruction while moving rapidly through something or some place. The hurricane tore through the town, leveling everything in its path. With all the dusty old books we keep in this warehouse, a fire would absolutely tear through the place, so we've got to be especially careful that nothing like that ever happens.
4. To progress through something with great speed or efficiency. You're going to make yourself sick tearing through your dinner like that. I used to tear through books when I was younger. Now, I'm lucky if I can get through one a month.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
1. To rip or lacerate something: The nail tore through my stocking. The hook caught on my shirt and tore it through.
2. To move through something with heedless speed; rush headlong through something: The student tore through the park on a bicycle.
3. To move through something with destructive force: The fire tore through the house.
4. To proceed with or accomplish something rapidly or hurriedly: The study group tore through the book the night before the final.
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.