put someone through his or her paces
Test thoroughly to see what someone can do, as in We put the new programmer though her paces, and she passed with flying colors. The idiom can refer to things as well, as in When we put the electrical system through its paces, we blew a fuse. The expression alludes to testing a horse's ability in the various paces (trot, canter, and gallop). Its use referring to horses dates from the late 1700s; its figurative use was first recorded in 1871.
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How to use put someone through his or her paces in a sentence
Fluoride first entered an American water supply through a rather inelegant technocratic scheme.
To put it rather uncharitably, the USPHS practiced a major dental experiment on a city full of unconsenting subjects.
We see detoxing as a path to transcendence, a symbol of modern urban virtue and self-transformation through abstinence.How Taryn Toomey’s ‘The Class’ Became New York’s Latest Fitness Craze|Lizzie Crocker|January 9, 2015|DAILY BEAST
And yes, someone has already called Spencer a “Small Fry,” har har.Freaking Out About Age Gaps in Gay Relationships Is Homophobic|Samantha Allen|January 9, 2015|DAILY BEAST
As this list shows, punishments typically run to a short-ish jail sentence and/or a moderately hefty fine.
He was voluble in his declarations that they would “put the screws” to Ollie on the charge of perjury.The Bondboy|George W. (George Washington) Ogden
Before Ripperda could unclasp his lips to reply, the stranger had opened the door, and passed through it like a gliding shadow.The Pastor's Fire-side Vol. 3 of 4|Jane Porter
A constant sense of easy balance should be developed through poising exercises.Expressive Voice Culture|Jessie Eldridge Southwick
Each day she resolved, "To-morrow I will tell Felipe;" and when to-morrow came, she put it off again.Ramona|Helen Hunt Jackson
This is the place where the Muscovite criminals are banished to, if they are not put to death.