great pains


Senior Member
How should one use this phrase "great pains"?

He went to great pains to do it.
He took great pains to do it.
It took him great pains to do it.
Last edited:
  • USMeg

    Senior Member
    I'd say definitely. (Others appear to disagree.)
    As regards the "go to" option, it appears that people do say Go to great pains -- but I wouldn't.
    I might say
    He went to great lengths...
    He went to a lot of trouble...


    Senior Member
    British English
    For examples of usage of phrases like this, try using the search box. On the results page you'll find a link | in context | << that link is for "great pains".


    Senior Member
    English - England
    I agree. The ways it’s normally used are:

    be at great pains to [+infinitive]
    go to great pains to [+infinitive]
    take great pains to [+infinitive]
    take great pains over something (= do it with great care)
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