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ax to grind

Definition of ax to grind

  1. :  a hidden and often selfish purpose for doing something. <He had a political ax to grind with his opponent.> <She claims that she has no ax to grind in criticizing the proposed law.>

Word by Word Definitions

  1. :  a cutting tool that consists of a heavy edged head fixed to a handle with the edge parallel to the handle and that is used especially for felling trees and chopping and splitting wood

    :  a hammer with a sharp edge for dressing or spalling stone

    :  a musical instrument (as a guitar or a saxophone)

  1. :  to shape, dress, or trim with an ax

    :  to chop, split, or sever with an ax

    :  to remove abruptly (as from employment or from a budget)

  1. : axiom

    : axis

  1. :  to reduce to powder or small fragments by friction (as in a mill or with the teeth)

    :  to wear down, polish, or sharpen by friction

    :  oppress, harass

  1. :  an act of grinding

    :  the sound of grinding

    :  dreary, monotonous, or difficult labor, study, or routine

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