Definition of clear something up in English:

clear something up

phrasal verb

  • 1Tidy something up by removing rubbish or other unwanted items.

    ‘Thomas decided to clear up his cottage’
    ‘he asked the youths to clear up their litter’
    ‘I keep meaning to come down here and clear up’
    • ‘An obsessively tidy man, he clears up after Elizabeth cooks.’
    • ‘They have responsibilities for clearing up and keeping areas clean.’
    • ‘‘The council needs to do something about it, and I don't just mean clearing it up and moving the youths on,’ he said.’
    • ‘Archaeologists clear up and tidy the remains of the past.’
    • ‘Mr Messy was very messy and asked Mr Clean and Mr Tidy to clear up his house.’
    • ‘A field on the borders of Southend and Rochford has become a dangerous rubbish tip and should be cleared up immediately, a councillor said.’
    • ‘Rather than spend their time hanging around on street corners, they can be found scouring their estates for litter, clearing up play areas and planting bulbs.’
    • ‘A new volunteer clean-up team has vowed to clear up litter hotspots.’
    • ‘They also want the council to clear up the area, and remove abandoned cars.’
    • ‘Residents and traders are responsible for clearing up afterwards and people have commented that the street is cleaner in the morning.’
    empty, empty out, void, make vacant
    tidy, tidy up, put in order, straighten up, clean up, put to rights, make shipshape, spruce up
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  • 2Solve or explain something.

    ‘he wanted to clear up some misconceptions’
    • ‘Tim briefly explained what Grandpa had told to him, hopefully clearing things up.’
    • ‘And if that doesn't clear up any remaining confusion, I'm sorry.’
    • ‘She could clear it up tomorrow by coming into the House and answering the questions.’
    • ‘I quickly cleared up the confusion with a follow up text to " disregard".’
    • ‘Unless misconceptions were cleared up here at the very beginning, they were likely to reinforce already existing prejudices.’
    • ‘The first is that I've been extremely busy at work trying to clear some things up before my three week winter break, which starts on Friday.’
    • ‘He figured the handout being passed around would clear it up a bit.’
    • ‘OK, let's clear up what's really going on here.’
    • ‘I want to clear something up so we get it straight.’
    • ‘I'm not necessarily telling you this to scare you or something, but I figured this could clear some things up.’
    solve, resolve, straighten out, find an answer to, find the answer to, answer, find the key to, decipher, break, get to the bottom of, make head or tail of, piece together, explain, expound
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  • 3Cure an illness or other medical condition.

    ‘folk customs prescribed sage tea to clear up measles’
    • ‘Garlic helps clear a cold sore up much faster than any other remedy I've tried.’
    • ‘If this happens, a course of antibiotics can be prescribed and this will usually clear it up quickly.’
    • ‘Most eye infections can be cleared up with antibiotics but even with treatment there is a risk of damage to the cornea, the transparent outer layer at the front of the eye.’
    • ‘The ailment becomes the cure and the symptoms are cleared up not by their actual remedy, but by our ignorant submission or our willful hypnosis to another glossy spin and a catchy jingle.’
    • ‘If your teenager has bad acne, your GP can prescribe medication to help clear it up.’
    • ‘Well, never mind, go to the clinic and they'll prescribe something to clear it up.’
    • ‘Luckily, a German pharmacist understood my sign language and sold me a miracle cure that cleared it up in a few days.’
    • ‘They do sell medication for the tank and you may be able to clear it up if you treat the tank at the first sign of trouble.’
    • ‘The advice giver said that ‘most people don't know’ that it can be cleared up quickly with antibiotics.’
    • ‘Tablets can be taken during the first outbreak to ease symptoms and help clear it up.’