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buoy someone or something up
to keep someone or something afloat. Use this cushion to buoy yourself up. The log buoyed up the swimmer until help came. The air trapped in the hull buoyed the boat up.
buoy someone up
Fig. to support, encourage, or sustain someone. The good news buoyed her up considerably. Her good humor buoyed up the entire party.
1. To keep something or someone aloft or afloat: Air currents helped buoy up the glider. The life jacket buoyed me up until I was rescued.
2. To keep something at a high level; support something: The advertising campaign buoyed up their sales through the summer. The athlete's endorsement buoyed the politician up.
3. To hearten or inspire someone or something: The cheering fans buoyed up the team's spirit. Your kind words have buoyed me up.