round up

Idioms & Phrases

round up

Collect or gather in a body, as in We'll have to round up some more volunteers for the food drive, or The police rounded up all the suspects. This term comes from the West, where since the mid-1800s it has been used for collecting livestock by riding around the herd and driving the animals together. By about 1875 it was extended to other kinds of gathering together.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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