limb from limb

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limb from limb (not comparable)

  1. dismembered
  2. completely apart; completely destroyed

Usage notes[edit]

Used with the verbs tear, pull and rip.


  • 1599, Thomas Nashe, Lenten Stuffe
    Hee will..tear him limbe from limbe, but hee will extract some capitall confession from him.
  • 1808, Daniel Defoe, The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe
    As soon as they had made this bloody bargain, they fell to work with the poor men's habitation; they did not set fire indeed to any thing, but they pulled down both their houses, and pulled them so limb from limb, that they left not the least stick standing, or scarce any sign on the ground where they stood; they tore all their little collected household-stuff in pieces, and threw every thing about in such a manner, that the poor men found, afterwards, some of their things a mile off from their habitation.