What does the idiom "be up and about" mean?

Idioms are generally defined as groups of words that form a meaningful whole when they come together, even though the words in them do not make sense on their own. They have produced many idioms according to their own cultural characteristics in communities using the English language. What does be up and about mean? In what situations is be up and about used?

Meaning of "be up and about"


The phrase "be up and about" is a phrase that is used to describe someone who is active and busy doing something. It is usually used when referring to a person who is recovered from an illness or injury and is now able to move more freely. The phrase can also be used to describe someone who is going out and doing activities, either personally or professionally.


The phrase "be up and about" originated in the United Kingdom in the late 1700s. It is derived from the phrase "to be up and doing something," which was widely used in the UK during this period. It was used to describe a person who was engaged in some sort of activity or work, and was not sitting idle. In other words, it was a phrase that indicated a person's energy and productivity.


The phrase "be up and about" is usually used in an informal setting, such as in everyday conversation. It can also be used in a more formal way to describe someone's activities. For example, a doctor might say, "I'm pleased to see that you are up and about again," or when discussing a business, one might say, "We need to get up and about to get the project finished on time."

Example Sentences

  • After his long illness, it was a relief to see him up and about again.
  • We need to be up and about if we want to get this job done in time.
  • The CEO is always up and about, travelling to different countries to meet potential investors.

The meanings of the words in the "be up and about" idiom

Idioms have a common language

"The early bird catches the worm" is an English idiom that means that those who wake up early and start their day early are more likely to succeed. A similar idiom in Spanish is "El que madruga, Dios le ayuda," which translates to "God helps those who rise early." This idiom emphasizes the importance of starting the day early in order to achieve success.


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