Definition of set on (or upon) in US English:

set on (or upon)

phrasal verb

  • Attack (someone) violently.

    • ‘The majority of these were against young boys and girls who were set upon by violent thugs as they made their way home late at night.’
    • ‘He was set upon by two attackers near his home on Saturday.’
    • ‘Years ago he and 10 colleagues were violently set upon outside a club.’
    • ‘He then gave his attackers the wrong number but was set upon again after they realised he had tried to trick them.’
    • ‘One night I saw one girl just set upon another one and she hammered her.’
    • ‘As he was running away, Johnny fell to the ground and was set upon.’
    • ‘He himself was set upon by unknown attackers as he witnessed things he refuses to talk about.’
    • ‘They met up with a third school friend and the four walked to an alleyway nearby where the three attackers suddenly set upon their victim.’
    • ‘He stated that another girl who tried to stop the attack on his daughter was then set upon as the melee escalated.’
    • ‘But as he was fleeing he stumbled and was set upon, stabbed and beaten.’
    attack, assail, assault, hit, strike, beat, give someone a beating, thrash, pound, pummel, wallop, hammer, tear into, set about, set upon, fall on, turn on, let fly at
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