stand up for

Idioms & Phrases

stand up for

Also, stick up for. Side with, defend, as in Paul always stands up for what he thinks is right, or Ginny has learned to stick up for her family. The first recorded use of the first term is by Shakespeare in King Lear (1:2), when Edmund, Gloucester's bastard son, says: "Now gods, stand up for bastards!" The colloquial variant was first recorded in 1837.

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