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put (one) on
To tease or joke with one, often by trying to convince them of something untrue. Quit putting me on, I know there isn't a Hollywood director calling me right now. I love putting my sister on—it's almost too easy to fool her.
1. verb To dress oneself with (an article of clothing); to place (an article of clothing) on oneself. A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "on." I think I put my pants on backward! If I'm having a bad hair day, I just put on a hat.
2. verb To begin playing (some kind of media, such as television, a movie, music, etc.). A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "on." Would you mind putting on a bit of music while we're having dinner? I don't really feel like going out tonight. Let's just stay in and put on a cheesy action flick.
3. verb To turn on or activate (something). A noun or pronoun can be used between "put" and "on." Do you mind if we put on the air conditioning for a little while? Don't forget to put the alarm on before you leave.
4. verb To change something to (a certain setting). A noun or pronoun is used between "put" and "on." Let me just put the computer on standby before we go to lunch. When they reach a certain altitude, they usually put the plane on autopilot.
5. verb To assume the appearance or sound of (something); to affect (something). Why do you always put on that goofy accent when we start talking about having kids? He always puts on a cheery persona when he is waiting tables.
6. noun A joke or prank, typically to convince one of something untrue. In this usage, the phrase is usually hyphenated. I know it's a put-on, so you can stop trying to convince me that a Hollywood director is calling me right now.
put someone or something on something
to place someone or something on top of something. The man put the child on the pony and led it about. June put the lid on the pickle jar and put it in the fridge.
put someone on
to tease or deceive someone innocently and in fun. Come on! You're just putting me on! He got real mad even though they were only putting him on.
put something on (someone or an animal)
to clothe someone or an animal in something. The mother put a little jacket on her child. Alice puts a silly little coat on her poodle during the winter.
put something on someone or something
to place or set something on someone or something. She put sand on Tom as he lay napping on the beach. Please put the paper on the coffee table.
put something on
to place clothing onto one's body; to get into a piece of clothing. I put a heavy coat on to go outside in the cold. Please put on this one and see if it fits.
to pretend; to act as if something were true. Ann wasn't really angry. She was just putting on. I can't believe she was just putting on. She really looked mad.
1. Clothe oneself with, as in I put on my socks. [Mid-1400s]
2. Apply, activate, as in He put on the brakes. [Mid-1700s]
3. Assume affectedly, pretend to, as in He put on a British accent. This idiom is sometimes put as put it on, as in He's not really asleep; he's putting it on. [Late 1600s; late 1800s]
4. put someone on. Tease or mislead another, as in I don't believe you! You're putting me on. [Slang; mid-1900s]
5. Add to, gain, as in Please put this on our bill, or I've put on some weight.
6. Cause to be performed, produce, as in I hear they're putting on Shakespeare this summer. [Late 1800s]
1. To place something so that it is supported by something else: The children put the flowers on a string and made a necklace. Please put the plates on the table.
2. To clothe oneself with something; don something: Don't forget to put on a warm coat. I put my sunglasses on because the sun was too bright.
3. To apply or activate something: I put on the brakes and the car slowed down. Put the emergency brake on when you park on a hill.
4. To assume some style or behavior affectedly: Don't put on that English accent! I put a smile on my face and greeted the customer.
5. To tease or mislead someone: You're putting me on!
6. To tease or mislead by suggesting something is true: They put on that they were hunting for treasure, when they were really just looking for something to do.
7. To add some quantity of weight: I must have put on five pounds over the holidays. You've put some weight on since I last saw you.
8. To produce or perform some event: The children put on a puppet show. There is a concert this weekend, but I'm not sure which organization is putting it on.
9. To make someone or something available for listening to, talking to, or watching via some broadcast or communication medium: Let's put on some music while we work. Will you put your mother on the phone?
10. To prescribe or administer a medicine or some other corrective that is taken or undertaken routinely: The doctor put the patient on antibiotics. I put my dog on a diet because he was getting fat.
11. To wager some stake on something; bet on something: I went to the track and put $50 on a horse.