verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
- to relinquish, especially reluctantly; contribute; give.
- to blurt out; state, as by way of making a confession: After several hours of vigorous questioning by the police, he finally coughed up the information.
Origin of cough
Related Words for cough uprefund, settle, handle, extend, grant, reimburse, offer, disburse, repay, compensate, meet, present, use, waste, consume, give, invest, contribute, expend, employ
Word Origin for cough
early 14c., coughen, probably in Old English, but not recorded, from Proto-Germanic *kokh- (with the rough "kh" of German or of Scottish loch; cf. Middle Dutch kochen, Middle High German kuchen). Onomatopoeic. Related: Coughed; coughing. As a noun from c.1300.
Hand over or relinquish, especially money; pay up. For example, It's time the delinquent members coughed up their dues. [Slang; late 1800s]
Confess or divulge, as in Pretty soon she'd cough up the whole story about last night. This idiom transfers the act of vomiting to telling the entire truth. [Slang; late 1800s]