happen (up)on (someone or something)

(redirected from happen upon them)

happen (up)on (someone or something)

To find or encounter someone or something randomly or without planning or intent. I happened on a quaint new craft store the other day. I happened upon your brother yesterday in the grocery store.
See also: happen

happen (up)on someone or something

to come upon someone or something, as if by accident. (See also come (up)on someone or something.) I just happened upon a strange little man in the street who offered to sell me a watch. Andrew happened on a book that interested him, so he bought it.
See also: happen, on

happen on

or happen upon
v.
To find or meet someone or something accidentally: She happened on a $10 bill that lay on the sidewalk. The detective happened upon a clue while searching the cabin.
See also: happen, on
References in periodicals archive ?
It is not enough to just buy safer products when we happen upon them: We must demand them from manufacturers, and also demand that Congress require the manufacturers to give us the information we need to make intelligent purchasing decisions.
The butterflies that exhibited color variations did not happen upon them as if they went shopping for new clothes.
Leprechauns have been known to take deadly revenge on those who happen upon them.