push through life


Senior Member
Good morning from Spain. Is the above threat –underlined in the paragraph below– an English idiom or expression? I have never seen it before, though my English level is not very high. It comes from the book “Where Angels Fear to Tread”, by the English writer Edward Morgan Foster, published in 1905.

It was now nearly ten years since Charles had fallen in love with Lilia Theobald because she was pretty, and during that time Mrs. Herriton had hardly known a moment’s rest. For six months she schemed to prevent the match, and when it had taken place she turned to another task –the supervision of the daughter-in-law. Lilia must be pushed through life without bringing discredit on the family into which she had married. She was aided by Charles, by the daughter Harriet, and, as soon as he was old enough, by the clever one of the family, Philip. The birth of Irma made things still more difficult. But fortunately, old Mrs. Theobald, who had attempted interference, began to break up. It was an effort to her to leave Whitby, and Mrs. Herriton discouraged the effort as far as possible. That curious duel which is fought over every baby was fought and decided early. Irma belonged to her father’s family, not to her mother’s.

Thank you for the help!
  • Franco-filly

    Senior Member
    English - Southern England
    It's not an idiom. We might talk of "guiding someone through life" i.e. setting them good examples, etc. but here, because [it appears that] Mrs Herriton wants to dominate Lilia she is forcing/pushing her to do things her way.
    < Previous | Next >