adjective strengthened or reinforced. Origin of beefed-up
First recorded in
1940–45 noun, plural beeves [beevz] /bivz/ for 2; beefs for 4. the flesh of a cow, steer, or bull raised and killed for its meat. an adult cow, steer, or bull raised for its meat. . Informal brawn; muscular strength. strength; power. weight, as of a person. human flesh. . Slang a complaint. an argument or dispute. verb (used without object) . Slang to complain; grumble. Verb Phrases beef up, to add strength, numbers, force, etc., to; strengthen: During the riots, the nighttime patrol force was beefed up with volunteers. to increase or add to: to beef up our fringe benefits. Origin of beef 1250–1300; 1885–90 for def 5
Anglo-French beof, Old French boef
) ox, cow; akin to
cow 1 Related forms beef·less, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Related Words for beefed up add
support British Dictionary definitions for beefed up noun the flesh of various bovine animals, esp the cow, when killed for eating plural beeves ( biːvz) an adult ox, bull, cow, etc, reared for its meat informal human flesh, esp when muscular plural beefs a complaint verb (intr) slang to complain, esp repeatedly he was beefing about his tax ( tr often foll by up) informal to strengthen; reinforce Word Origin for beef
C13: from Old French
boef, from Latin bōs ox; see cow 1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for beefed up v.
"to complain," slang, 1888, American English, from noun meaning "complaint" (1880s). The noun meaning "argument" is recorded from 1930s. The origin and signification are unclear; perhaps it traces to the common late 19c. complaint of U.S. soldiers about the quantity or quality of beef rations.
c.1300, from Old French
buef "ox; beef; ox hide" (11c., Modern French boeuf), from Latin bovem (nominative bos, genitive bovis) "ox, cow," from PIE root *gwou- "cow, ox, bull" (see cow (n.)). Original plural was beeves.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Idioms and Phrases with beefed up
In addition to the idiom beginning with
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
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