stand up to

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stand up to (third-person singular simple present stands up to, present participle standing up to, simple past and past participle stood up to)

  1. (transitive) To object to or interfere with the actions of (someone seen as bullying, pushy, or controlling).
    If anyone stood up to him, I bet he'd back down.
    • 2020 July 15, Christian Wolmar, “J'Accuse...! A letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson”, in Rail, pages 50–51:
      He stated flatly that he could not run his airline with the middle seats unoccupied, as it was simply uneconomic. Actually, he probably could, but he stood up to the Government and ministers wilted and simply acquiesced. We needed some strong figure in the [rail] industry to stand up to government, but there has been no one to knock on number 10's door and argue the case.
  2. (transitive) To withstand, to weather, to survive in spite of.
    The paint looks good, but I don't know if it will stand up to years of weather.
    • 1946 July and August, K. Westcott Jones, “Isle of Wight Central Railway—2”, in Railway Magazine, page 244:
      [] it had obtained from its constituents rather antiquated and inefficient equipment, which scarcely stood up to overwork; [] .
    • 1962 March, “The New Year Freeze-up on British Railways”, in Modern Railways, page 158:
      Overhead electric equipment generally stood up well both to the weight of vertically falling snow and to the effects of snow on contact wires; [...].

Related terms[edit]