get at

[get at] {v.} 1. To reach an understanding of; find out themeaning.

This book is very hard to get at.

2. To do harm to.

The cat is on the chair trying to get at the canary.

Compare: GETBACK AT. 3. To have a chance to do; attend to.

I hope I have timeto get at my homework tonight.

Compare: GET TO(2). 4. To mean; aimat; hint at.

What was Betty getting at when she said she knew oursecret?

What the teacher was getting at in this lesson was that itis important to speak correctly.

Syn.: DRIVE AT. Compare: GET ACROSS.