Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to shop: body shop
give away the shop
To pay or concede too much during a negotiation, exchange, or transaction. Focusing on environmental concerns, the congressional candidate has accused his opponent of giving away the shop to corporate interests. You have to make your business attractively affordable, but you can't give away the shop or you'll never turn a profit. I hope you didn't give away the shop for that beat up old car.
The act of visiting stores, or looking in their windows, to see what is available without buying anything. My bank account is so sad these days that I'll only be window-shopping for a while! A: "You guys really went in that expensive boutique?" B: "Yeah, but we were only window-shopping, don't worry! We know we can't afford anything in there!"
A café where coffee, tea, and other light refreshments are typically served. I definitely need some caffeine before class, so I'll meet you at the coffee shop after I finish up at the library.
A brothel. Primarily heard in UK. Everyone knows that old tavern used to be a knocking shop.
A brothel. Primarily heard in Australia. Everyone knows that old tavern used to be a knock-shop.
be like a bull in a china shop
To be aggressive and clumsy in a situation that requires delicacy and care. My son is always like a bull in a china shop, so I'm worried about taking him to the museum. Surrounding him with valuables does not seem like a wise idea! This is a complex problem, and if you attack it like a bull in a china shop, you will alienate a lot of people.
*bull in a china shop
Prov. a very clumsy creature in a delicate situation. (*Typically: as awkward as ~; like ~.) I never know what to say at a funeral. I feel like a bull in a china shop, trampling on feelings without even meaning to. Lester felt like a bull in a china shop; reaching for an orange, he made several elaborate pyramids of fruit tumble down.
close someone up
to close a surgical wound at the end of a surgical procedure. Fred, would you close her up for me? Fred closed up the patient.
close something up
1. to close someone's business, office, shop, etc., temporarily or permanently. Tom's restaurant nearly went out of business when the health department closed him up. The health department closed up the restaurant.
2. to close something that is open, such as a door or a box. Please close the door when you leave.
1. Lit. [for an opening] to close completely. The door closed up and would not open again. The wound will close up completely in a day or so.
2. Fig. [for a place of business] to close for business. The store closed up and did not open until the next day.
close up shop
Fig. to quit working, for the day or forever. (Fixed order.) It's five o'clock. Time to close up shop. I can't make any money in this town. The time has come to close up shop and move to another town.
to go about looking at goods in store windows without actually buying anything. The office workers go window-shopping on their lunch hour, looking for things to buy when they get paid. Joan said she was just going window-shopping, but she bought a new coat.
Keep your shop and your shop will keep you.
Prov. If you work hard at running your business, then your business will always make enough of a profit to support you. When Grandpa turned his hardware store over to me, he said, "It's hard work, but it's a good living. Keep the shop and the shop will keep you."
set up shop somewhere
to establish one's place of work somewhere. Mary set up shop in a small office building on Oak Street. The police officer said, "You can't set up shop right here on the sidewalk!"
shop around (for something)
to shop at different stores to find what you want at the best price. I've been shopping around for a new car, but they are all priced too high. You can find a bargain, but you'll have to shop around.
1. Lit. a list of things one needs to buy. I made up a shopping list for groceries that we are out of. Don't forget to take the shopping list with you to the store.
2. Fig. a list of things, especially questions or things one wants. I have a shopping list of absolute musts. He showed up for the interview with a shopping list so long that it took two pages.
shut someone up
to silence someone. Oh, shut yourself up! Will you please shut up that crying baby!
to talk about business or work matters at a social event (where such talk is out of place). All right, everyone, we're not here to talk shop. Let's have a good time. Mary and Jane stood by the punch bowl, talking shop.
close up shopalso shut up shop
to stop doing business Poulin says high taxes and global competition have forced him to close up shop.Opposite of: set up shop
set up shop
to establish a business or an organization Some companies have set up shop in other countries, like China. UN agencies have set up shop all over the world.Opposite of: close up shop
to compare the price and quality of similar items before buying one You should certainly shop around before buying a new computer.
to talk about work when not working Two New York Yankee pitchers will be there to sign autographs and talk shop with fans.
shut (somebody) up
to stop talking or making noise, or to make someone do this I wish you'd shut up and listen. He called me a fool, and that shut me up.
shut somebody/something up
to keep people or animals in a separate place Every day she went up to a little room on the third floor where she shut herself up to work. At night we always kept the dog shut up in its cage.
be all over the shop(British informal) also be all over the lot (American informal)
1. to be scattered in a lot of different places What have you been doing with your clothes? They're all over the shop!
2. to be confused and badly organized I've been so unimpressed by their campaign. They're all over the shop. How can I tell what's the best deal when lending rates are all over the lot?
be like a bull in a china shop
to often drop or break things because you move awkwardly or roughly Rob's like a bull in a china shop - don't let him near those plants. She's like a bull in a china shop when it comes to dealing with people's feelings. (= behaves in a way that offends people)
a knocking shop(British very informal) also a knock-shop (Australian very informal)
a place where men pay to have sex with women People say it's a knocking shop but I've never seen anything going on.
shut up shop(British & Australian) also close up shop (mainly American)
to stop doing business, either temporarily or permanently They were forced to shut up shop because they weren't getting enough customers.See be all over the shop, talk shop
if people who work together talk shop, they talk about their work when they are not at work Even when they go out in the evening, they just talk shop all the time.
bull in a china shop
An extremely clumsy person, as in Her living room, with its delicate furniture and knickknacks, made him feel like a bull in a china shop . The precise origin for this term has been lost; it was first recorded in Frederick Marryat's novel, Jacob Faithful (1834).
Also, close up shop. Stop doing business, temporarily or permanently; also, stop working. For example, The bank is closing up all its overseas branches, or That's enough work for one day-I'm closing up shop and going home. [Late 1500s]
set up shop
Open a business, start a profession, as in Now that you've got your degree, where do you plan to set up shop? This idiom was first recorded about 1570.
1. Look for the best bargain, opportunity, or the like, as in This job offers only minimum wage so she decided to shop around for one with better pay . This expression alludes to looking in different stores in search of bargains or a particular item. [c. 1920]
2. Look for a buyer for, offer for sale to various parties, as in The company is now being actively shopped around. [Second half of 1900s]
1. Imprison, confine, enclose, as in The dog was shut up in the cellar for the night, or She shut up her memories and never talked about the past. [c. 1400]
2. Close completely, as in The windows were shut up tightly so no rain came in. [Early 1500s] This usage also occurs in shut up shop, meaning "close the premises of a business," as in It's late, let's shut up shop now. [Late 1500s] Also see close up, def. 3.
3. Cause someone to stop speaking, silence someone, as in It's time someone shut him up. [Early 1800s]
4. Stop speaking, as in I've told you what I think and now I'll shut up. This usage also occurs as a rather rude imperative, as in Shut up! You've said enough. [First half of 1800s]
Converse about one's business or profession, as in Whenever John and his dad get together, they talk shop. [Mid-1800s]
1. To shut something completely: The doctor closed up the cut with stitches. I closed the box up with wire and tape.
2. To become shut completely: My eye closed up because of the infection.
3. To shut and lock a building for a period of time: It's my job to close up the store for the night because I'm always the last one to leave. At the end of August, we'll close the cottage up for the winter.
1. To go from store to store in search of merchandise or bargains: We shopped around for the best price before buying. Don't buy the first pair of shoes you see; shop around first.
2. To look for something better: I think the receptionist is shopping around for a new job.
3. To offer something, such as a large block of common stock, for sale to various parties: They shopped the deal around for a couple of months but couldn't find a buyer.
1. To stop speaking: Shut up!—I can't concentrate. We know to shut up when a teacher walks into the room.
2. To cause someone to stop speaking; silence someone: Her outstanding performance shut up her critics. The children's yelling was disturbing the neighbors, so I went in and shut them up.
3. To shut and lock some building for a temporary period of time: We shut up the camp for the winter. The caretaker shut the cottage up.
n. a place where stolen cars are cut or broken up into car parts for resale. The state is cracking down on these chop-shops.
n. a police station. The pigs down at the cop-shop tried to act like they didn’t know who Frank was.
n. a liquor store. I need something from the happy shop.
n. a brothel. (see also hooker.) There is a secret hook shop over on Maple Street.
in. to be quiet. Shut up and listen!
n. a workplace where employees work long hours for low pay in poor conditions. The bank manager is unfair! I’ve been a teller in this sweat-shop for thirteen years, and I’ve never had a new carpet in my office.
set up shop
To establish one's business operations.
To talk about one's work.
bull in a china shop
Clumsily destructive. An early written example of the expression appeared in Frederick Marryat's 1834 novel, Jacob Faithful , although the image of a bull wrecking havoc as he wandered among tables and shelves of fine porcelain can be traced a century earlier. The expression can also be found in several European languages, although the animal in question is an elephant. In 1940, an American press agent led a bull through a New York City china shop as a publicity stunt. The bull didn't break anything, but a bystander trying to avoid the bull backed into a table and caused the damage.