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rough up

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verb (tr, adverb)

informal to treat violently; beat up
to cause (feathers, hair, etc) to stand up by rubbing against the grain

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“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Example sentences from the Web for rough up

Idioms and Phrases with rough up

rough up

Manhandle, subject to physical abuse, as in The gang was about to rough him up when the police arrived. [First half of 1900s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
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