like a dose of salts

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From the laxative properties of Epsom salts.

Prepositional phrase[edit]

like a dose of salts

  1. (simile) Very quickly and thoroughly.
    • 1949, P.G. Wodehouse, The Mating Season:
      After five minutes' conversation with me the old folks would penetrate the deception like a dose of salts.
    • 2009, Esther Cheo Ying, Black Country to Red China, →ISBN:
      Every so often a mass campaign swept the country like a dose of salts, and officials, writers, artists, people in the public eye were purged and flushed out on a tidal wave of hysteria.
    • 2010, Coleen Nolan, Envy, →ISBN:
      Carew, a notorious axeman, had just gone through a neighbouring regional station like a dose of salts, restructuring and streamlining, as he liked to call it.
    • 2015, June Francis, A Mother's Duty, →ISBN, page 212:
      She was a bit concerned about the old woman getting down on her knees because of her complaints about rheumatism, but ever since Becky had dropped her off, the maid had not stopped working and had gone through the hotel like a dose of salts.

Usage notes[edit]

Most commonly used in the phrase "to go through (something) like a dose of salts".