see through (someone or something)(redirected from they saw through them)
see through (someone or something)
To not be fooled by someone's or something's outward appearance and understand their or its true nature. He always acts so generous and magnanimous, but I can see right through him—he only cares about himself, really. I think most people see through the company's flimsy PR spin and understand that this deal is a huge rip-off.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
saw through something
to cut through something with a saw. I can't saw through this wood. It's too hard! I can saw through it!
see something through
to follow through on something until it is completed. Mary is prepared to see the project through. It's going to be an unpleasant experience, but I hope you'll see it through.
see through someone or something
1. Lit. [for one's vision] to penetrate something clear or opaque or a person. Of course, I can see through the window! With x-rays, they can see through your body!
2. Fig. to understand or detect the true nature of someone or something. You can't fool me anymore. I can see through you and all your tricks. This plan is designed to make money for you, not to help people. I can see through it! I'm not a fool!
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. see through someone or something . Understand the true character or nature of someone or something, as in We saw through his superficial charm: he was obviously a liar. [c. 1400]
2. Also, see out. Remain with an undertaking to the end; also, provide steadfast support to. For example, I saw the reorganization through and then I left the company, or We'll see out the year in Florida and then decide if the move is permanent, or We'll see you through medical school but then you're on your own.
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.
1. To apprehend one's true nature or character despite some affectation or deception: We saw through his superficial charm.
2. To cause or help someone to manage or survive: I have enough savings to see me through a month without work. We'll see you through until you finish college.
3. To work on some project until completion: We are determined to see the project through.
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.
see through someone/something, to
To penetrate to the true nature; to overcome deception. This locution dates from the sixteenth century, and the idea is no doubt much older still. “He saw through him, both within and without,” wrote Edward Hall (Chronicles, ca. 1548). Ben Jonson amplified it with another metaphor (Cynthia’s Revels, 1599, 5.4): “He is a mere peece of glasse, I see through him.”
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer