work on

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work (up)on something

1. . to repair or tinker with something. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) He's out in the kitchen, working upon his tax forms. He's working on his car.
2. . [for something] to have the desired effect on something. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) This medicine should work well upon your cold. I hope it will work on your cold.
See also: on, work

work on someone

1. . Lit. [for a physician] to treat someone; [for a surgeon] to operate on someone. The doctor is still working on your uncle. There is no news yet. They are still working on the accident victims.
2. . Fig. [for someone] to try to convince someone of something. I'll work on her, and I am sure she will agree. They worked on Max for quite a while, but he still didn't agree to testify.
3. Fig. [for something, such as medication] to have the desired effect on someone. This medicine just doesn't work on me. Your good advice doesn't seem to work on Sam.
See also: on, work

work on something

to repair, build, or adjust something. The carpenter worked on the fence for three hours. Bill is out working on his car engine.
See also: on, work

work on

Also, work upon. Exercise influence on, as in If you work on him, he might change his mind, or She always worked upon their feelings by pretending to be more ill than she really was . [Early 1600s]
See also: on, work

work on

1. To exert oneself physically or mentally in order to do, make, or accomplish something: The author is working on a new set of short stories.
2. To practice something in order to acquire or polish a skill: You need to work on your handwriting.
3. To effect a desired result on something: The medicine works on coughs. This joke never fails to work on him.
4. To exert an influence on someone: Her friends worked on her to join the group.
See also: on, work
References in periodicals archive ?
Behind him on the wall is his untitled work upon which Fish Brewing Co.
We want the guys to feel good going into the off-season, give them something to work upon going into spring training next season.
People who want to found their thinking and their work upon the landscape must tell themselves over and over again: There is no law requiring the processors of farm and forest products to be big, let alone global.
Logical positivists failed to see that, without metaphysics to work upon and to refine, science would stagnate.
It is the sequel to Barber of Seville, The and is the work upon which Mozart based the opera Le nozze di Figaro (1786).
But only 16 percent of them were able to find work upon relocating.
Summary: New Delhi [India], Nov 8 (ANI): Indian football captain Sunil Chhetri believes the upcoming AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 will help make the team realise the areas they need to work upon and improve.
Prequalification are invited for Performance of work upon current repair of replacement of wooden door fillings on the doors of PVC
We have to work upon the Health Care Providers at the grass root level to tackle the problem.
As to his refusal to attend today's parliamentary session, Aoun said "going to the House of Parliament requires a clear work schedule to work upon.
Islamabad -- Facing worst power crisis in the country, Pakistan is set to work upon 4,500 Mega Watt electricity capacity dam to end power crisis on permanent basis.
Every Speaker will report to the Parliament about carried out work upon expiry of one year.
The programs that these authors work upon spans a wide spectrum of topics like marketing, social media, market research, IT enabling, product development in organizations like Industree, Samhita Social Ventures, EkSochh, Zameen Orgainc and Eco Exist to name a few.
Why, in the absence of the Inspectors, did Saddam start a missile programme, testing missiles that exceeded the 150km range proscribed by the UN, and start work upon a missile with a range of 1,000km?
The work upon which this publication is based was also performed by Pearson Educational Measurement.