- to prison: to be sent up the river for a bank robbery.
- in prison: Thirty years up the river had made him a stranger to society.
Origin of river1
Origin of river2
Examples from the Web for river
Contemporary Examples of river
He observes the bodies floating away on the river, pulling on his cigarette with a sneer.Houellebecq’s Incendiary Novel Imagines France With a Muslim President
January 9, 2015
But you know, I had only one other hero in my life acting and that was River [Phoenix].Coffee Talk with Ethan Hawke: On ‘Boyhood,’ Jennifer Lawrence, and Bill Clinton’s Urinal Exchange
December 27, 2014
Today, the train chugs north out of Kanchanaburi over the famous bridge before it hits a spectacular bend in the river.
And then, on one recent morning, the train made a stop at a small station near an especially beautiful section of the river.
Along the river, crumbling remnants of an active trading hub are overtaken by nature.The Congo's Forgotten Colonial Getaway
December 18, 2014
Historical Examples of river
I see some man in the East has a fad for breaking the ice in the river and going swimming.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
Then, Robert, you quarreled with the man you took across the river.
I was down at the river just now, and saw it with my own eyes.
Shot six ducks; great numbers were in the river, also white cockatoos.Explorations in Australia
From far and wide, wild people flocked to the banks of the river.Ancient Man
Hendrik Willem van Loon
- a large natural stream of fresh water flowing along a definite course, usually into the sea, being fed by tributary streams
- (as modifier)river traffic; a river basin
- (in combination)riverside; riverbed Related adjectives: fluvial, potamic
Word Origin for river
early 13c., from Anglo-French rivere, Old French riviere "river, riverside, river bank" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *riparia "riverbank, seashore, river" (cf. Spanish ribera, Italian riviera), noun use of fem. of Latin riparius "of a riverbank" (see riparian). Generalized sense of "a copious flow" of anything is from late 14c. The Old English word was ea "river," cognate with Gothic ahwa, Latin aqua (see aqua-). Romanic cognate words tend to retain the sense "river bank" as the main one, or else the secondary Latin sense "coast of the sea" (cf. Riviera).
U.S. slang phrase up the river "in prison" (1891) is originally in reference to Sing Sing prison, which was literally "up the (Hudson) river" from New York City. Phrase down the river "done for, finished" perhaps echoes sense in sell down the river (1851), originally of troublesome slaves, to sell from the Upper South to the harsher cotton plantations of the Deep South.
see sell down the river; up the river.