gnaw away

Also found in: Idioms.

w>gnaw away

vinagen (→ at, on an +dat)
vt sepwegnagen
References in classic literature ?
It suffices that the bees should be enabled to stand at their proper relative distances from each other and from the walls of the last completed cells, and then, by striking imaginary spheres, they can build up a wall intermediate between two adjoining spheres; but, as far as I have seen, they never gnaw away and finish off the angles of a cell till a large part both of that cell and of the adjoining cells has been built.
Nor can I gnaw away the boards, as I have no teeth.
Rouseffs popularity has crumbled as her woes gnaw away at her and her government.
It comes as the major grocers - Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons - face a squeeze as discounters Aldi and Lidl gnaw away at their market share.
Pardew, Manager of the Year in 2012, acknowledges that, while the threat of the sack can't be ignored, he refuses to let it gnaw away at his confidence.
LITTLE more of the sexual Aperversion that was allowed to gnaw away at our society for decades was revealed yesterday.
Andujar is unlikely to worry Nadal with his serve but will still aim to gnaw away at his compatriot s sagging confidence, which was already weakened by consecutive claycourt losses to man-of-the-moment Novak Djokovic in Madrid and Rome.
It will gnaw away at them just as Geoff Hurst's controversial goal in the 1966 World Cup final has gnawed away at the Germans for 44 years.
That burning sense of injustice will continue to gnaw away at the hearts of all those attending further commemorative services in the decades to come.
If the road's condition is just a ruse by the other side to gnaw away at time until Turkey's EU accession is evaluated, said Michaelides, the government was wrong to make a deal.