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1. verb To call someone or something by phone. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." Please call up your mother once in a while. I called up the school to find out the status of my application.
2. verb To call by phone or yell to someone on a higher level of a house or building. Call up to the CEO's assistant and tell him that the 3 o'clock interview is here. I called up to my dad to tell him the kitchen sink was still leaking.
3. verb To invite people to move from a lower level in a particular place to a higher one (such as a stage), or from the back of a place (or somewhere not in front) to the front. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." We will call the graduates up one by one, so be sure to listen for your name.
4. verb To cause one to think of or remember someone or something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." That song calls up many fond memories of my childhood. Can we go somewhere else for dinner? That place just calls my ex-girlfriend up.
5. verb To initiate a discussion on a particular topic or issue. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." You didn't miss much—Betsy just called up budgetary discrepancies as the next topic of discussion.
6. verb To utilize something, often a quality or skill. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." The championship game was so intense that I really had to call up my mental toughness just to get through it.
7. verb To bring someone into active military service. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." With this war intensifying, I'm worried that my son will be called up and sent overseas.
8. verb To retrieve information from a computer. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." Call up the latest budget report for me, please. I'll need a printed copy for my meeting tomorrow.
9. verb To give a minor league player a spot on a major league team's roster. A noun or pronoun can be used between "call" and "up." The pitcher just got called up from the minors, so this will be his first big test.
10. noun A minor league athlete who has been summoned to play for a major league team (perhaps temporarily). This phrase is usually hyphenated when used as a noun. With so many veterans injured, their roster has a lot of call-ups right now, so it's no surprise they're going to miss the playoffs.
11. noun The opportunity for a minor league athlete to play for a major league team. This phrase is usually hyphenated when used as a noun. Because I wasn't a high profile draft pick, I had to start my career in the minors and wait to get a call-up.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
call someone or something up
to call someone, a group, or a company on the telephone. I will call them up and see what they have to say. Please call up the supplier.
call someone up
to request that someone or a group report for active military service. (See also call someone or something out.) The government called the reserve units up for active service. They called up another battalion.
call something up
to summon information from a computer. John used his laptop to call the information up. With a few strokes on the computer keyboard, Sally called up the figures she was looking for.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Summon to military service, as in He was called up for active duty. [Late 1600s]
2. Cause to remember, bring to mind, as in These stories call up old times. [c. 1700] Also see call to mind.
3. Telephone someone, as in I'll call up the theater and find out about tickets. [Late 1800s]
4. Retrieve data from a computer memory, as in I asked him to call up the last quarter's sales figures. [Second half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. To shout something from a lower level to a higher one: Standing on the sidewalk, I called up to the people on the roof.
2. To summon someone from a lower level to a higher one: The speaker called members of the audience up to the stage to receive a prize. After I climbed to the top of the tower and determined that it was safe, I called up the others who had stayed behind.
3. To telephone someone or something: As soon as I heard the news, I called up my broker and told her to sell the stock. I called him up to ask if he was free for lunch.
4. To summon someone to active military service: The military has called up thousands of reserve troops for active duty. The reservists have begun training in case the military calls them up.
5. To cause someone to remember something; bring something to mind: The view of the river called up a painting I had once seen. The therapist was certain that I had repressed memories and that her therapy would call them up.
6. To bring something forth for action or discussion: At the meeting, the treasurer called up the budget proposal for review. Supporters of the legislation complained that the senator had never called it up for a vote.
7. To summon or draw on something: I called up all my courage and asked the boss for a raise.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.