take up

From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search
See also: takeup and take-up


Alternative forms[edit]


  • (file)


take up (countable and uncountable, plural take ups)

  1. Alternative form of take-up
    • 2013 May 25, “No hiding place”, in The Economist[1], volume 407, number 8837, page 74:
      In America alone, people spent $170 billion on “direct marketing”—junk mail of both the physical and electronic varieties—last year. Yet of those who received unsolicited adverts through the post, only 3% bought anything as a result. If the bumf arrived electronically, the take-up rate was 0.1%. And for online adverts the “conversion” into sales was a minuscule 0.01%.


take up (third-person singular simple present takes up, present participle taking up, simple past took up, past participle taken up)

  1. (transitive) To lift; to raise.
    1. (transitive) To pick up.
    2. (transitive) To remove (a ground or floor surface, including the bed of a road or the track of a railway).
      We're going to have to take up the floorboards.
      • 1876, Supreme Court of Iowa, June Term 1876 court record, “The Davenport Central Railway Co. v. The Davenport Gas Light Co., Appeal from Scott Circuit Court”, published in The American Railway Reports, Volume 14:
        It is hereby ordered, adjudged and decreed that a temporary writ of injunction issue, enjoining said defendant and all persons acting under or for it, from in any manner taking up, disturbing or interfering with the road-bed and track of said plaintiff so as to prevent the passage of cars thereon
      • 1915 April, Lord Dunsany [i.e., Edward Plunkett, 18th Baron of Dunsany], “Taking Up Picadilly”, in Fifty-one Tales, London: [Charles] Elkin Mathews, →OCLC:
        They had pickaxes in their hands and wore corduroy trousers and that little leather band below the knee that goes by the astonishing name of “York-to-London.” They seemed to be working with peculiar vehemence, so that I stopped and asked one what they were doing. “We are taking up Picadilly,” he said to me.
      • 1946 January and February, “Notes and News: Demolition of Rhydyfelin Viaduct”, in Railway Magazine, page 52:
        Passenger traffic was subsequently discontinued, and early in the recent war a considerable amount of the permanent way at the Treforest end of the railway was taken up.
    3. (transitive) To absorb (a liquid), to soak up.
    4. (transitive, sewing) To shorten (a garment), especially by hemming.
      If we take up the sleeves a bit, that shirt will look much better on you.
      Synonym: take in
    5. (transitive) To tighten or wind in (a rope, slack, etc.)
      Synonym: take in
      The reel automatically took up the slack.
  2. (transitive) To occupy; to consume (space or time).
    The books on finance take up three shelves.
    All my time is taken up with looking after the kids.
  3. (transitive) To take, to assume (one’s appointed or intended place).
    She took up her post at the foot of the stairs.
  4. (transitive) To set about doing or dealing with (something).
    1. (transitive) To begin doing (an activity) on a regular basis.
      I’ve taken up knitting.
      I wish to take up mathematics.
      • 2004, Jane Powell, Linda Svendsen, Bungalow: The Ultimate Arts & Crafts Home[2], →ISBN, page 44:
        Each of the things he took up, he took up with passion and intensity
    2. (transitive) To begin functioning in (a role or position), to assume (an office).
      He took up his post as assistant director last Friday.
    3. (transitive) To address or discuss (an issue).
      • 2019 February 1, J. C. Garden, “Interrogating innocence: “Childhood” as exclusionary social practice”, in Childhood[3], volume 26, number 1, page 56:
        While such social effects have not gone entirely unquestioned, most critical work on the topic of childhood innocence [] has focused on the regulation of children's sexual agency. Here, I take up the notion of childhood innocence to examine how, in the US context, it regulates race relations by producing a particular "childhood" that perpetuates White supremacy.
      Let’s take this up with the manager.
    4. (transitive) To accept, to adopt (a proposal, offer, request, cause, challenge, etc.).
    5. (transitive, with 'on') To accept (a proposal, offer, request, cause, challenge, etc.) from.
      Shall we take them up on their offer to help us move?
    6. (transitive) To join in (saying something).
      They took up the cry of their oppressed compatriots.
    7. (transitive, intransitive) To resume, to return to something that was interrupted.
      Let’s take up where we left off.
    8. (transitive) To implement, to employ, to put into use.
      • 2008 April 23, Iolo ap Dafydd, “Wood homes ‘solution’ to shortage”, in BBC News[4]:
        So I’d imagine if they were to take up this system, or a similar system, we should be able to build quicker.
    9. (transitive, Canada) To review the solutions to a test or other assessment with a class.
      You have 30 minutes for the quiz. We’ll take up the answers at 1 o'clock.
      • 2015, Mr. Bawa, Mr. Bawa's Semester 1 Classes at St. Mary's[5]:
        Also, the grade 12’s in the class were also called down to the cafeteria from 9:30 am to about 9:50 am, so they missed class when I took up some of the worksheets.
      • 2018, /u/CharmingHistorian3, Mustafa's C37 midterm solution?[6]:
        Can someone in CSCC37 (mustafa's tutorial!) email me the solution to the midterm? (the tutorial right after the midterm where he took up the solutions)
    10. (transitive, Australia, New Zealand) To begin occupying and working (a plot of uncultivated land), to break in.
    11. (transitive, chiefly British) To pay off, to clear (a debt, loan, mortgage, etc.).
  5. (transitive, archaic) To arrest (a person).
    Synonym: take in
    The police took up the suspect.
  6. (transitive) To reprove or reproach (a person).
    • 1856, John Byrom, Richard Parkinson, Francis Robert Raines, The Private Journal and Literary Remains of John Byrom, page 114:
      [] he talked strangely of Mr. Law [] wearing a pair of stockings that a ploughman would not have picked off a dunghill; upon which last expression I took him up for saying that Mr. Law carried his expression beyond truth, when he himself exposed what he thought wrong with so much vivacity, and Dr. Hartley said that he thought there I had him; []
  7. (transitive) To begin to support or patronize, to sponsor (a person), to adopt as protégé.
  8. (transitive, slang) To seduce (a person); to rizz up.
    • 2023, “3D (song)”, performed by Jungkook ft. Jack Harlow:
      I used to take girls up to Stony Brook and steal their hearts like some crook, true story

Derived terms[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.