spruce

2
[ sproos ]
/ sprus /

adjective, spruc·er, spruc·est.

trim in dress or appearance; neat; smart; dapper.

verb (used with object), spruced, spruc·ing.

to make spruce or smart (often followed by up): Spruce up the children before the company comes.

verb (used without object), spruced, spruc·ing.

to make oneself spruce (usually followed by up).

Origin of spruce

2
1580–90; obsolete spruce jerkin orig., jerkin made of spruce leather, i.e., leather imported from Prussia (see spruce1), hence fine, smart, etc.
Related formsspruce·ly, adverbspruce·ness, nounun·spruced, adjective

Definition for spruce up (2 of 2)

spruce-up

[ sproos-uhp ]
/ ˈsprusˌʌp /

noun

an act of cleaning up, refurbishing, renovating, or the like.

Origin of spruce-up

noun use of verb phrase spruce up
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for spruce up (1 of 3)

spruce up


verb

(adverb) to make (oneself, a person, or thing) smart and neat

British Dictionary definitions for spruce up (2 of 3)

spruce

1
/ (spruːs) /

noun

any coniferous tree of the N temperate genus Picea, cultivated for timber and for ornament: family Pinaceae. They grow in a pyramidal shape and have needle-like leaves and light-coloured woodSee also Norway spruce, blue spruce, white spruce, black spruce
the wood of any of these trees

Word Origin for spruce

C17: short for Spruce fir, from C14 Spruce Prussia, changed from Pruce, via Old French from Latin Prussia

British Dictionary definitions for spruce up (3 of 3)

spruce

2
/ (spruːs) /

adjective

neat, smart, and trim
Derived Formssprucely, adverbspruceness, noun

Word Origin for spruce

C16: perhaps from Spruce leather a fashionable leather imported from Prussia; see spruce 1
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

Idioms and Phrases with spruce up

spruce up


Make neat and trim, as in She spruced up the chairs with new cushions. This idiom originated in the late 1500s as simply spruce but had acquired up by 1676.

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