thumb through

Also found in: Dictionary.
Related to thumb through: under someone's thumb, like a sore thumb

thumb through (something)

To casually peruse or look at the pages in a book, magazine, or other reading material without much attention or scrutiny. I thumbed through the sports section while waiting at the doctor's office, but I was too nervous to pay attention to it. I thumbed through your proposal, and even at first glance I can tell you that it won't be approved by the board.
See also: through, thumb
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

thumb through something

 and leaf through something
to look through a book, magazine, or newspaper, without reading it carefully. I've only thumbed through this book, but it looks very interesting. I leafed through a magazine while waiting to see the doctor.
See also: through, thumb
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

thumb through

To go through some reading material quickly or superficially, turning from page to page with or as if with the thumb: I thumbed through the directory for my dentist's phone number.
See also: through, thumb
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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