on trial

Idioms & Phrases

on trial

  1. In the process of being tried, especially in a court of law. For example, He would be put on trial for the murder of his wife. [Early 1700s]

  2. As a test of something, on probation, as in They said we could take the vacuum cleaner on trial and return it if it was too noisy. [Early 1700s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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