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[uhp-werd] /ˈʌp wərd/
adverb, Also, upwards
toward a higher place or position:
The birds flew upward.
toward a higher or more distinguished condition, rank, level, etc.:
His employer wishes to move him upward in the company.
to a greater degree; more:
fourscore and upward.
toward a large city, the source or origin of a stream, or the interior of a country or region:
They followed the Thames River upward from the North Sea to London.
in the upper parts; above.
moving or tending upward; directed at or situated in a higher place or position.
upwards of, more than; above:
My vacation cost me upwards of a thousand dollars.
Origin of upward
before 900; Middle English; Old English upweard (cognate with Dutch opwaart). See up-, -ward
Related forms
upwardly, adverb
upwardness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for upward
  • It runs upward and backward, parallel to the central sulcus, and is sometimes divided into an upper and a lower ramus.
  • The upward lurch largely reflected higher fuel and food prices.
  • The upward pressures last month included higher food prices, especially for bread and cereals.
  • Salt oozed upward, splitting the rocks, and then water cracked them open further as it froze and thawed.
  • The highway heads upward, wrapping itself around the shoulders and dipping into the valleys of the mountains.
  • Shortly after you move away from the entrance, you're propelled upward at high speed by the linear motor.
  • Swiping upward or downward with momentum enables scrolling in a browser.
  • Another needed ingredient is something to give the air an upward shove.
  • The relatively thin stratus clouds have slow, upward moving air currents.
  • Snowmobiling defies gravity by allowing participants to move with upward motion with relative ease.
British Dictionary definitions for upward


directed or moving towards a higher point or level
a variant of upwards
Derived Forms
upwardly, adverb
upwardness, noun


from a lower to a higher place, level, condition, etc
towards a higher level, standing, etc
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
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Word Origin and History for upward

Old English upweard, upweardes; see up + -ward. Cf. Middle Low German upwart, Middle Dutch opwaert, Middle High German ufwart. Phrase upward mobility first recorded 1949; mainly restricted to sociologists' jargon until 1960s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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