Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “sum sth/sb up”

sum sth/sb up

phrasal verb with sum     /sʌm/ verb (-mm-)
An action or object that sums something or someone up represents the most typical qualities of that person or thing: For me, her paintings sum up the restless spirit of America.Typifying, illustrating and exemplifyingMeaning and significance to quickly form an opinion about someone or something: She summed up the situation quickly and took charge.Summaries and summarisingAccounts and stories
(Definition of sum sth/sb up from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of sum sth/sb up

Translations of “sum sth/sb up”

Word of the Day

well in (with)

to have a good relationship with someone in which they like you and from which you get an advantage

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More