pass the torch


Also, hand on the torch. Relinquish responsibilities, a tradition, practice, or knowledge to another. For example, When the company's founder became too ill to continue, he passed the torch to his nephew. This metaphoric expression alludes to the ancient Greek torch race, in which a lighted torch was passed from one runner to the next. A translation from both Greek and Latin, the English version dates from the late 1800s.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.