See also: knockup and knock-up




knock up (third-person singular simple present knocks up, present participle knocking up, simple past and past participle knocked up)

  1. (colloquial) To put together, fabricate, or assemble, particularly if done hastily or temporarily. See also knock together. [from 16th c.]
    I'll just knock up a quick demo for the sales presentation.
  2. (Britain) To awaken (someone) as by knocking at the door; rouse; call; summon; also, to go door-to-door on election day to persuade a candidate's supporters to go to the polling station and vote. See also knocker up. [from 17th c.]
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby Dick, chapter 15
      However, by dint of beating about a little in the dark, and now and then knocking up a peaceable inhabitant to inquire the way, we at last came to something which there was no mistaking.
    • 1892, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Speckled Band, page 1
      “Very sorry to knock you up, Watson,” said he, “but it's the common lot this morning. Mrs. Hudson has been knocked up, she retorted upon me, and I on you.”
    • 1966: Ngaio Marsh, Death at the Dolphin, page 160
      ‘I didn't knock you up when I came in,’ Peregrine said. ‘There seemed no point. It was getting light. I just thought I’d leave the note to wake me at seven. And oddly enough I did sleep. Heavily.’
  3. (dated) To exhaust; wear out; tire out; to fatigue until unable to do more. [from 18th c.]
    • 1861, John Petherick, Egypt, the Soudan and Central Africa, page 389
      The day being exceedingly hot, the want of food had knocked up my followers []
  4. (dated, intransitive) To become exhausted or worn out; to fail of strength; to become wearied, as with labor; to give out. [from 18th c.]
    • 1856, Thomas de Quincey, Memorials, page 81
      [] the horses were beginning to knock up under the fatigue of such severe service []
  5. (slang) To impregnate, especially out of wedlock. See knocked up. [from 19th c.]
    I guess his summer plans are shot now that he knocked his girlfriend up.
    • 2015, Jaime Loren, Waiting for April, Pan (→ISBN)
      “And how many other girls has he knocked up?” “Would you keep your voice down? Mom's home.” She pressed her hands to her head. “I just don't understand how you could ditch Rowan and get knocked up by Scott, like, right away.”
  6. (racket sports, intransitive) To gently hit the ball back and forth before a tennis match, as practice or warm-up, and to gauge the state of the playing surface, lighting, etc. See knock-up. [from 19th c.]
  7. (bookbinding) To make even at the edges, or to shape into book form.
    to knock up printed sheets



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