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adverb \ˈəp\

Simple Definition of up

  • : from a lower to a higher place or position

  • : in a high position or place

  • : toward the sky or ceiling

Full Definition of up

  1. 1 a (1) :  in or into a higher position or level; especially :  away from the center of the earth (2) :  from beneath the ground or water to the surface (3) :  from below the horizon (4) :  upstream 1 (5) :  in or into an upright position <sit up>; especially :  out of bed b :  upward from the ground or surface <pull up a daisy> c :  so as to expose a particular surface

  2. 2 :  with greater intensity <speak up>

  3. 3 a :  in or into a better or more advanced state b :  at an end <your time is up> c :  in or into a state of greater intensity or excitement d :  to or at a greater speed, rate, or amount <prices went up> e :  in a continual sequence :  in continuance from a point or to a point <from third grade up> <at prices of $10 and up> <up until now>

  4. 4 a (1) :  into existence, evidence, prominence, or prevalence (2) :  into operation or practical form b :  into consideration or attention <bring up for discussion>

  5. 5 :  into possession or custody

  6. 6 a :  entirely, completely <button up your coat> b —used as an intensifier <clean up the house>

  7. 7 :  in or into storage :  by <lay up supplies>

  8. 8 a :  so as to arrive or approach b :  in a direction conventionally the opposite of down: (1) :  to windward (2) :  northward (3) :  to or at the top (4) :  to or at the rear of a theatrical stage

  9. 9 :  in or into parts

  10. 10 :  to a stop —usually used with draw, bring, fetch, or pull

  11. 11 :  for each side <the score is 15 up>

Examples of up

  1. The land rises up from the valley.

  2. She stood beneath the window and called up to her friend.

  3. Please pick your clothes up off the floor.

  4. We watched the sun come up.

  5. He held up his hand.

  6. We stored the boxes up in the attic.

  7. She stuck a notice up on the wall.

  8. What's going on up there?

  9. He looked up at the stars.

  10. The cards were on the table facing up.

Origin of up

partly from Middle English up upward, from Old English ūp; partly from Middle English uppe on high, from Old English; both akin to Old High German ūf up and probably to Latin sub under, Greek hypo under, hyper over — more at over

First Known Use: before 12th century

Rhymes with up




Simple Definition of up

  • : in a high place or position

  • : raised so as to be opened

  • : risen above the horizon

Full Definition of up

  1. 1 a :  risen above the horizon <the sun is up> b :  standing c :  being out of bed d :  relatively high <the river is up> <was well up in her class> e :  being in a raised position :  lifted <windows are up> f :  being in a state of completion :  constructed, built g :  having the face upward h :  mounted on a horse <a new jockey up> i :  grown above a surface <the corn is up> j (1) :  moving, inclining, or directed upward <the up escalator> (2) :  bound in a direction regarded as up

  2. 2 a (1) :  marked by agitation, excitement, or activity (2) :  positive or upbeat in mood or demeanor b :  being above a former or normal level (as of quantity or intensity) <attendance is up> <the wind is up> c :  exerting enough power (as for operation) <sail when steam is up> d :  ready; specifically :  highly prepared e :  going on :  taking place <find out what is up>

  3. 3 a :  risen from a lower position <men up from the ranks> b :  being at the same level or point <did not feel up to par> c (1) :  well informed :  abreast <up on the news> (2) :  being on schedule <up on his homework> d :  being ahead of one's opponent

  4. 4 a :  presented for or undergoing consideration <contract up for negotiation>; also :  charged before a court <up for robbery> b :  being the one whose turn it is <you're up next>

up against
  1. :  confronted with :  face-to-face with <the problem we are up against>

up to
  1. 1 :  capable of performing or dealing with <feels up to the task>

  2. 2 :  engaged in <what is he up to>

  3. 3 :  being the responsibility of <it's up to me>

Examples of up

  1. The candy is up on the top shelf.

  2. The window is already up.

  3. Your package is up at the front desk.

  4. We were up near the stage.

  5. Are the kids up yet?

  6. We are up every morning at six.

  7. I was up all night studying for the test.

  8. Gas prices are up again.

Before 12th Century

First Known Use of up

before 12th century




Definition of up

  1. 1 a —used as a function word to indicate motion to or toward or situation at a higher point of <went up the stairs> b :  up into or in the <was hid away up garret — Mark Twain>

  2. 2 a :  in a direction regarded as being toward or near the upper end or part of <lives a few miles up the coast> <walked up the street> b :  toward or near a point closer to the source or beginning of <sail up the river>

  3. 3 :  in the direction opposite to <sailed up the wind>

Examples of up

  1. He climbed up the ladder.

  2. She had to walk her bike up the hill.

  3. The bathroom is up the stairs.

  4. Go up the street and turn left.

  5. We walked up the street to meet them.

  6. They live just up the block from us.

  7. I paddled the canoe up the river.

  8. The ship sailed up the coast.

  9. Her office is all the way up the hall on the right.

  10. He paced up and down the hall, waiting for news about his wife's operation.


First Known Use of up





Simple Definition of up

  • : a period or state of success, happiness, etc.

Full Definition of up

  1. 1 :  one in a high or advantageous position

  2. 2 :  an upward slope

  3. 3 :  a period or state of prosperity or success

  4. 4 :  3upper

  5. 5 :  a fundamental quark that has an electric charge of +2/3 and that is one of the constituents of a nucleon


First Known Use of up





Simple Definition of up

  • : to make (something) higher

Full Definition of up

upped play \ˈəpt\ or in vi 2 upuppedup·pingups or in vi 2 up

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to rise from a lying or sitting position b :  to move upward :  ascend

  3. 2 —used with and and another verb to indicate that the action of the following verb was either surprisingly or abruptly initiated <he up and quit his job>

  4. transitive verb
  5. 1 :  raise, lift

  6. 2 a :  to advance to a higher level: (1) :  increase (2) :  promote 1a b :  raise 8d, e

Examples of up

  1. <climbing fuel prices have forced the delivery company to up its prices>

  2. <the road constantly ups and downs as it makes its way over the hills>


First Known Use of up




Definition of UP

  1. Upper Peninsula (of Michigan)

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up up? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

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