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    #1

    He ate himself sick

    Can I say, 'he ate himself dead'? if I want to say that he died as a result of having eaten too much? If not, what would be a proper way to say this?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: He ate himself sick

    I know of no cases in which overeating led directly to death.

  2. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: He ate himself sick

    I found an example of 'ate himself to death' on https://www.google.com/webhp?sourcei...lf+to+death%22

    Not a teacher.

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    #4

    Re: He ate himself sick

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    Can I say, 'he ate himself dead'? if I want to say that he died as a result of having eaten too much? If not, what would be a proper way to say this?
    What a great question!

    "Ate himself sick" is a common figure of speech. It means he ate so much he got sick. "Ate himself dead" would be understood as humor, word play on a common expression.

    If you're not trying to be funny, say "He ate himself to death." That's the correct figure of speech.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #5

    Re: He ate himself sick

    I want to use it in a situation which is not funny and at the same time I want to use it figuratively to comment on a situation in which someone expands their business beyond what they can manage. 'To bite off more than one can chew' somehow does not seem adequate enough to me since it does not convey the idea of ultimate punishment.

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    #6

    Re: He ate himself sick

    Did someone expand their business to the point where they died? If not, I see no reason to use anything to do with death in whatever phrase you choose.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: He ate himself sick

    Might the OP liken 'death' to 'failure'?

    Not a teacher.
    Last edited by Matthew Wai; 20-Apr-2015 at 05:03.

  6. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: He ate himself sick

    Matthew, the obesity and its effects killed him, not the eating. But I get your point.

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    #9

    Re: He ate himself sick

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    I want to use it in a situation which is not funny and at the same time I want to use it figuratively to comment on a situation in which someone expands their business beyond what they can manage. 'To bite off more than one can chew' somehow does not seem adequate enough to me since it does not convey the idea of ultimate punishment.
    The person overextended himself. Ate himself to death wouldn't work here for me.

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