come up dry

Definition of come up dry

:to fail to produce water, oil, etc.
  • They drilled for oil but the well came up dry.
often used figuratively
  • They went searching for clues but came up dry.

Word by Word Definitions

up play
  1. : in or into a higher position or level

  2. : from beneath the ground or water to the surface

  3. : from below the horizon

  1. : risen above the horizon

  2. : standing

  3. : being out of bed

  1. used as a function word to indicate motion to or toward or situation at a higher point of

  2. : up into or in the

  3. : in a direction regarded as being toward or near the upper end or part of

  1. : one in a high or advantageous position

  2. : an upward slope

  3. : a period or state of prosperity or success

  1. : to rise from a lying or sitting position

  2. : to move upward : ascend

  3. used with and and another verb to indicate that the action of the following verb was either surprisingly or abruptly initiated

dry play
  1. : free or relatively free from a liquid and especially water

  2. : not being in or under water

  3. : lacking precipitation or humidity

  1. : to make dry (see 1dry)

  2. : to become dry

  1. : the condition of being dry (see 1dry) : dryness

  2. : something dry

  3. : prohibitionist


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