dig up dirt

D

dig up dirt

Meaning

  • find and disclose destructive evidence about someone.
  • finding derogatory details about something or somebody.
  • finding negative information that is concealed.
  • attempt to discover negative things about an individual to prevent others from admiring them.
  • information about a person that could ruin their reputation.

Example Sentences

  1. After calling my sources at the tabloids, I dug up dirt on the actress.
  2. The leading candidate is not sparing any time to dig up dirt on his rival.
  3. She hired a private investigator to dig up dirt on her rival.
  4. I don’t mind what the opposition is doing. I’m running a clean campaign, and there’s no need for anyone on my team to dig up any dirt on our rivals.
  5. In the movie, a corrupt district attorney frames a dirt-digging reporter, and he is sentenced to manslaughter.
  6. The secretary has been digging up dirt about her ex-husband and spreading it.
  7. They are making every effort possible to dig up dirt on the opposing contender.

Origin

The idiom comes from the words dig and dig. To dig is to make a hole or to turn up the soil with a spade or other tool. Dirt is a substance like dust or mud that makes things unclean. People commonly use the word dirt as a metaphor for scandals or unsavory gossip. Digging up dirt on someone means finding information that can harm their reputation.

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