the dust settles

(redirected from the dust clears)

the dust settles

1. Literally, the dust stirred up by some activity is no longer in the air. The phrase is often preceded by "when" or "after." We should only start painting when the dust settles after construction is finished.
2. Things return to normal after a period of excitement, a high level of activity, etc. The phrase is often preceded by "when" or "after." I promise to take you to the park after the dust settles and work isn't so hectic.
See also: dust, settle

the dust settles

or

the dust clears

COMMON If the dust settles or the dust clears after an argument, a problem or a big change, the situation becomes calmer. Now that the dust has settled, it is clear that nothing much has changed. When the dust cleared from Tuesday's election, Washington state found itself leading the nation in the number of women elected.
See also: dust, settle

the dust settles

things quieten down.
1998 New Scientist The dust is settling on the chaos which ensued when the French sold 110,000 tickets to the World Cup football matches by phone.
See also: dust, settle