take pains, to(redirected from to take pains)
take (great) pains (to do something)
Fig. to make a great effort to do something. Tom took pains to decorate the room exactly right. We took great pains to get there on time.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
take pains, to
To make a laborious effort; to take assiduous care. The use of pains for “troubles” dates from Shakespeare’s time and survives mainly in this cliché (and in the adjective painstaking). “Yet much he praised the pains he took, And well those pains did pay,” wrote Sir Walter Scott (Marmion, 1808).
See also: take
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer