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How often my wife was at me about that projected grand entrance-hall of hers, which was to be knocked clean through the chimney,

What is the meaning of the highlighted section?

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  • Welcome to the site. The question is about a puzzling idiom. There are many uses of "clean" and it is not reasonable to expect a non-native (I assume) speaker to recognise the appropriate idiomatic usage. No source is needed to define the question better. I therefore do not understand the unexplained downvote and have compensated for it.
    – Anton
    Commented Feb 2, 2023 at 18:08

1 Answer 1

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"clean" is used informally to emphasize that something was done completely, thoroughly (definition 12). "clean through" is similar to "straight through".

It seems that the wife wants to build a grand entrance hall through where the chimney is. The chimney will need to be demolished.

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  • +1 though I wonder whether through may suggest the width of the entrance hall is going to be no more than the width of the chimney.
    – Henry
    Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 17:40
  • @Henry Doubt it. Entrance halls are usually bigger than chimneys. Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 17:40
  • That was my concern. When I go straight through something, I expect it to be bigger than me, whether or not I leave a me-sized hole in it.
    – Henry
    Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 17:48

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