or stand·up

[ stand-uhp ]
See synonyms for: stand-upstand-ups on

  1. standing erect or upright, as a collar.

  2. performed, taken, etc., while one stands: a stand-up meal.

  1. designed for or requiring a standing position: a stand-up lunch counter.

  2. (of a fight) characterized by the rapid exchange of many blows with little attention given to defensive maneuvering.

  3. (of a person) characterized by an erect or bold stance.

  4. Baseball. (of a double or triple) pertaining to a hit that allows the hitter to reach the base safely without having to slide.

  5. relating to or noting a performance by a comedian delivering a monologue while alone on the stage: stand-up comedy;the best stand-up comics.

  6. Slang. loyal and dependable: He seems to be a real stand-up guy.

  1. comedy in which a comedian delivers a monologue while alone on the stage: We bought tickets to see some stand-up at a club downtown.

  2. a comedian who delivers such monologues: I've been a stand-up for about five years.

Origin of stand-up

First recorded in 1580–90; adjective and noun use of verb phrase stand up

Words Nearby stand-up Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use stand-up in a sentence

  • Then, as Squinty remembered how he had been taught to stand up on his hind legs, he thought he would do that trick now.

    Squinty the Comical Pig | Richard Barnum
  • Have plenty of chairs ready in the drawing-room, as an invitation to dinner by no means argues a "stand up" party.

  • The red comb on the top of his head has teeth like a carpenter's saw, and is so large it will not stand up straight.

    Seven O'Clock Stories | Robert Gordon Anderson
  • He was thought brave, for no man in the Ozarks dared to stand up against him in a fight, but at heart he was a coward.

  • From that day my affairs have gone from bad to worse, and I have naught in the wide world but the clothes I stand up in.

British Dictionary definitions for stand up

stand up

  1. (intr) to rise to the feet

  2. (intr) to resist or withstand wear, criticism, etc

  1. (tr) informal to fail to keep an appointment with, esp intentionally

  2. stand up for

    • to support, side with, or defend

    • US to serve as best man for (the groom) at a wedding

  3. stand up to

    • to confront or resist courageously

    • to withstand or endure (wear, criticism, etc)

adjectivestand-up (prenominal)
  1. having or being in an erect position: a stand-up collar

  2. done, performed, taken, etc, while standing: a stand-up meal

  1. (of comedy or a comedian) performed or performing solo

  2. informal (of a boxer) having an aggressive style without much leg movement: a stand-up fighter

  1. a stand-up comedian

  2. stand-up comedy

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 stand-up


Remain valid, sound, or durable, as in His claim will not stand up in court, or Our old car stood up well over time. [Mid-1900s]

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