Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
- cop-on (noun only)
- (Ireland, informal, idiomatic) Common sense.
- That idiot has no cop on.
- 2008, Joseph Dolan, "Hazards caused by pedestrians" (letter to the editor), Irish Independent, 22 November 2008:
- While she is right that some cyclists do cycle in a dangerous manner, pedestrians need to have some "cop on" as well.
- 2011, "Broadside at Croke Park", The Meath Chronicle, 11 May 2011:
- Fixtures' secretary Jimmy Henry refuted the comments. "I wouldn't have got this job if I hadn't some cop on," he said.
- 2012, Martina Nee, "Student with no ‘cop on’ fined for using his scientific brilliance for cannabis growing", Galway Advertiser, 29 March 2012:
- Molloy’s solicitor said that there was a[sic] element of naivety here in that his client, who is “quite brilliant” in his studies in physics, has “no cop on” and took a “scientist’s approach” to growing cannabis.
- (Ireland, informal, idiomatic) To behave, to grow up.
- You'll get in trouble with the boss if you don't cop on.
- 2006, Johnny Fallon, Party Time: Growing Up in Politics, Mercier Press (2006), ISBN 9781856355209, page 110:
- Drink, drink and more drink. Ulster Bank, College Green, was filled with sore heads for the entire month of the world cup. I knew it was time to start copping on when my housemate, O'Dea, who was a much harder drinker than I ever was, said to me, 'Jaysus, I was fierce worried about you during the World Cup, you were on the lash every fuckin' night, fallin' home in some state.'
- 2011, Donnacha O'Callaghan, Joking Apart: My Autobiography, Transworld Ireland (2011), ISBN 9781848270961, page 124:
- After a while, though, we matured and copped on.
- 2011, Daniel McConnell, "Tough rehab, yes -- but mind you don't end up killing the patient", Irish Independent, 23 October 2011:
- The inference was clear. You Irish were all very naughty and it's time you copped on and grew up.
- (UK, dialect) To understand.
to behave, grow up