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Origin of mop-up
British Dictionary definitions for mop-up
verb (tr, adverb)
Idioms and Phrases with mop-up
Clear an area of remaining enemy troops after a victory, as in They left behind just one squadron to mop up. [c. 1900]
Perform the minor tasks that conclude a project or activity, as in Go ahead, I'll mop up these last invoices. [First half of 1900s] Both usages transfer the task of housecleaning with a mop to other kinds of cleanup.