square up

[ skwair-uhp ]
See synonyms for square up on Thesaurus.com
verb phrase
  1. to adjust (something) so that it is square or rectangular:Use a mallet to square up the frame and check by measuring the diagonals—both dimensions should be the same.Your desk would look neater if you squared up the piles of papers so they don’t look so much like haystacks.

  2. to pay, settle, or reconcile (an account, bill, ledger, etc.): We squared up with the cashier and checked out of the hotel.A property manager can help you collect dues, square up the books, and save money by negotiating discounts with local service providers.

  1. to accord or agree (often followed by with):It’s a compelling thesis, but the evidence presented does not really square up with the theory.

  2. to face or cause to face someone or something directly (often followed by to or with):Coaching manuals are fairly consistent in advising athletes to square up the body to the basket and jump vertically.First we square up, sitting or standing directly across from the other person, because effective, forthright communication is not assisted by angles.

  3. to confront or face up to something, as a fight, challenge, or sporting match (often followed by to or against); square off: These strike actions are growing in regularity as businesses and the unions square up to each other.Malaysia will square up against Pakistan in their last round robin match on Thursday.

  4. Baseball. to hit firmly or solidly: The pitcher’s breaking ball is impossible to square up when he keeps it low in the strike zone.

Origin of square up

First recorded in 1750–60

Words Nearby square up

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use square up in a sentence

  • Especially if it was the only possible way you could think of to square up everything and add just a little wee present besides?

    Molly Make-Believe | Eleanor Hallowell Abbott
  • If he fails to "square up" at this time he "loses face," as his expressive phrase has it.

  • We must get the camp and the cutting going on again, and then well square up with McCane when we have time.

    The Boss of Wind River | David Goodger (goodger@python.org)
  • At length "Bluey's" promise to "square up in a day or so" was accepted, under protest, and the customer departed.

    Cap'n Eri | Joseph Crosby Lincoln
  • If we could only take him safely back to Oakdale, it might seem to square up a little for what weve done.

British Dictionary definitions for square up

square up

  1. to pay or settle (bills, debts, etc)

  2. informal to arrange or be arranged satisfactorily

  1. (intr foll by to) to prepare to be confronted (with), esp courageously

  2. (tr foll by to) to adopt a position of readiness to fight (an opponent)

  3. (tr) to transfer (a drawing) by aid of a network of squares

  4. Scot to tidy up

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with square up

square up

Settle a bill or debt, as in The others went to get the car while he squared up with the waiter. This idiom derives from square in the sense of “set straight.” [Early 1800s]

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