‘Make short work of something/someone’

When you make short work of something, you deal with it very quickly. It’s an expression that is mostly used in informal contexts.

Examples: We made short work of the problems that the physics teacher had given us. * I made short work of the biscuits that my mother baked on my birthday.

‘Make short work of someone’

It is also possible to make short work of someone.

Example: The challenger made short work of the former champion.

Source: S. Upendran, The Hindu ‘Know Your English’ Series, February 6, 2006

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