Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “butter sb up”

butter sb up

informal
verb [T] uk phrasal verb with butter   /ˈbʌt.ər/ us    /ˈbʌt̬.ɚ/
to be very kind or friendly to someone or try to please someone, so that that person will do what you want them to do: You'll have to butter them up a bit before they'll agree.
(Definition of butter sb up from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of butter sb up?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Urging & persuading, but you might be interested in these topics from the Expressing agreement & support topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “butter sb up” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

debut

the occasion when someone performs or presents something to the public for the first time

Word of the Day

Come on – you can do it! Phrasal verbs with ‘come’.

by Liz Walter​,
November 19, 2014
As part of an occasional series on the tricky subject of phrasal verbs, this blog looks at ones formed with the verb ‘come’. If you are reading this blog, I’m sure you already know come from, as it is one of the first things you learn in class: I come from Scotland/Spain.

Read More 

ped-text verb

November 24, 2014
to text someone while walking I’m ped-texting, I’m looking down at my phone, 75 percent of the time.

Read More