Green’s Dictionary of Slang

up adv.

1. drunk.

[Ire]W. Macready Irishman in London II i: I’m quite up — I’m almost corn’d, faith.

2. (orig. UK Und.) arrested; in prison.

[UK]Five Years’ Penal Servitude 5: A series of rapid inquiries as to who I was and what I was ‘up’ for.
[UK]H. Nisbet Bushranger’s Sweetheart 113: ‘What’s he up for?’ ‘Oh, nothing much.’.
Larne Times (Belfast) 30 Apr. 8/7: Kelly had been ‘up’ five times, all for larceny.
[UK]N. Lucas Autobiog. of a Thief 230: Well, mate, what are you up for?
[UK]‘George Orwell’ Keep The Aspidistra Flying (1962) 197: A ragged dirty man who claimed to be a coster ‘up’ for obstruction, was put into the cell.
[US]C. Hamilton Men of the Und. 243: The house burglar Donald Lowrie. Up for his first jolt.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 17: Rocco Fabrizi, who was up for stealing cars.
[US]L. Rodríguez Always Running (1996) 53: up for keeps – sentenced for life.

3. (orig. US) mentally stimulated, excited, hopeful (cf. up adj. (2)).

[US]B. Schulberg Harder They Fall (1971) 298: The big fella’s got to be up to stay in there with Stein.
[US]J. Kirkwood There Must Be a Pony! 298: I hadn’t seen her so ‘up’ [...] since before Ben died.
[US]R. Price Ladies’ Man (1985) 28: Maybe ‘Feelings’ wasn’t ‘up’ enough. Maybe they only liked dirty songs.
[US]S. King Christine 336: Leigh Cabot was not up. She flunked an exam for the first time in her high school career.

4. (also up on) intoxicated by a drug (cf. up adj. (1)).

[US]‘Hal Ellson’ Duke 130: I’m feeling cool as hell [...] I’m way up.
[US]E. De Roo Go, Man, Go! 35: You level pretty fast. I’m still up there. High and groovy.
[US] Letter in Edelman Dear America (1985) 27 Apr. 155: I think he was up on pot.
[US]L. Kramer Faggots 228: Matching their evening’s drugs, coordinated with Pepino’s own, so that clashing cymbals jerked them Up.
[US](con. 1986) G. Pelecanos Sweet Forever 126: No question [...] this Karras is up on something for sure.
[UK]N. Griffiths Sheepshagger 62: Pill time as well. Do em in now an we’ll be well up by-a time we get yer.

5. (US black) of a person, ready, prepared.

[US]E. Gilbert Vice Trap 54: Gremie boy’s up [...] I told him about you hustling those goodies for our friend.
[UK]J. Mowry Way Past Cool 244: I need you full-up tonight.
[US]T. Fontana ‘Straight Life’ Oz ser. 1 ep. 5 [TV script] If we going to be partners, we just ought to be up on how big a risk we going to take.
[US]Teen Lingo: The Source for Youth Ministry [Internet] we’re up Something said when it’s time to leave ‘Hey we’re up!’.
[US]G. Pelecanos Way Home (2009) 257: You know what you’re fixin to do? [...] are you up for it?
[UK]J.J. Connolly Viva La Madness 144: His stable of up-for-it birds who loved his sexy accent.

6. (US campus) sexually aroused.

[US] C. Baker et al. CUSS.
[US]B. Jackson Killing Time 187: He’d come back there every week for hormone shots. To keep his thing up.

7. (US) upset; bothered.

[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 14 Nov. 3/3: Touch her once on any ‘delicate point’ and she was ’up’ immediately, and victimised the offender by splitting his head open with a bottle.
[US]Current Sl. VI.

8. mentally stimulated in a positive or negative way, energised or stressed.

[US](con. 1967) E. Spencer Welcome to Vietnam (1989) 108: You need an extra dimension to deal with the tension of being so up all the time.
[Aus]T. Winton Lockie Leonard, Legend (1998) 170: ‘My mum’s [...] had a kind of breakdown.’ ‘Man. Oh, mate. She’s so up. So together, I can’t believe it.’.

9. (US black) tense, nervous.

[UK]J. Mowry Six Out Seven (1994) 321: Don’t get up, man. Just be yourself.

10. interested, participating.

[US]Simon & Burns ‘Hot Shots’ Wire ser. 2 ep. 3 [TV script] ‘You hit D?’ ‘D ain’t up’.

11. see up to adv.

In phrases

have (someone) up (v.)

to bring someone before the courts.

[US]F. Hutchison Philosophy of Johnny the Gent 12: [A]s the Wise Crackin’ Kid told the judge the other mornin’ when they had him up fer a witness.
[US]F. Packard Adventures of Jimmie Dale (1918) I iv: We’ve never had him up for anything.
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 55/2: have up bring before a court; eg ‘Have him up over it, he hasn’t got a legal leg to stand on.’.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].
[UK]J.J. Connolly Viva La Madness 302: Ain’t you worried about being had up?
up above

(Aus.) in prison.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 12 Sept. 52/1: [as cited] Did. yer. see. my. Bill ‘up above’ she said in a husky whisper. yes, replied enery shaking his head mournfully. one uv the ‘screws’ gave im er bashing Just. before I came out.
up on (adv.)

see sense 4 above.

SE in slang uses

In phrases

up on it (adj.) [SE up on, adept, knowledgeable]

(US black) aware, knowledgeable.

[US]Bone Crusher f/ Busta Rhymes, Cam’Ron, Jadakiss ‘Never Scared’ [lyrics] Now all my soldiers (soldiers), thugs (thugs), niggaz (yea!), I know you want it! / Don’t stop, get it, get it, bitches betta get up on it!
up on the stickers (adj.)

(US black) aware, appreciative of what is important.

[US]D. Burley Orig. Hbk of Harlem Jive 38: If you were up on the stickers, like I am, you’d dig that they, themselves, are just out there mugging.