drink up, eat up

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Pepa123

Senior Member
Czech - the Czech Republic
Hi,

can I use "drink up" and "eat up" in this context?:

A: How much beer have you drunk up today?
A: How many bars of chocolate did you eat up yesterday?

Or should I use there only "drink" and "eat", without "up"?

Thank you!
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    can I use "drink up" and "eat up" in this context?:
    A: How much beer have you drunk up today?
    A: How many bars of chocolate did you eat up yesterday?
    No. It is not idiomatic. "Up" implies that the action has been completed, but yesterday and today both state
    that the action has finish. The two do not appear together.
     

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    I don’t often (or ever?) hear this pattern with reference to a completed event. They are much more often used as instructions, encouraging someone to eat/drink.
     

    Sparky Malarky

    Moderator
    English - US
    No. It is not idiomatic. "Up" implies that the action has been completed, but yesterday and today both state
    that the action has finish. The two do not appear together.
    I don’t often (or ever?) hear this pattern with reference to a completed event. They are much more often used as instructions, encouraging someone to eat/drink.
    I say both are possible.

    The first little pig made his house of straw. The wolf blew his house down and ate him up. (The wolf consumed him entirely.)

    He drank up all the milk. (He consumed all the milk. No milk is left.)

    More figuratively: He drank up all the money. (He bankrupted himself by spending too much on alcohol and parties.)

    Eat up! It’s time to go. (Finish your meal, so we can leave.)

    Let me pour you a drink. There. Drink up! (Enjoy your beverage.)

    But I agree that the example sentences - how many beers did you drink up - are not idiomatic, for the reason PaulQ gave.
     

    Pepa123

    Senior Member
    Czech - the Czech Republic
    No. It is not idiomatic. "Up" implies that the action has been completed, but yesterday and today both state
    that the action has finish. The two do not appear together.
    Thanks, PaulQ,

    but if there is no "yesterday", can I use it in the past or future then? I mean not only for encouraging someone to finish their drink/food quickly ...

    A1: He drank up his beer and left the bar.
    A2: He drank his beer and left the bar.
    B1: After he eats his lunch up, he´ll go out.
    B2: After he eats his lunch, he´ll go out.

    Are these fine? Do the A1, B1 only stress that the drinking/eating happened/will happen "more quickly"? Or aren´t they correct either?

    Thanks.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Are these fine?
    No. They are are not "fine" - B1 is possible, but, to me it sounds a little strange and unnatural. A1 is more likely but the "up" is not needed.
    Do the A1, B1 only stress that the drinking/eating happened/will happen "more quickly"?
    No - speed is not very important in the meaning of "up": the important meaning is "to finish; to do something completely.

    "The farmer stored his grain in the barn, but the rats ate it up." -> "The farmer stored his grain in the barn, but the rats ate all of it."

    "Drink up!" = Finish your drink!" -> Here, up seems to give the meaning of speed, but it does not. It seems as if there is speed because "Drink" is a command - an imperative - and commands are usually carried out quickly.


    A1: He drank up his beer and left the bar. = A1: He drank all of his beer and left the bar.
    B1: After he eats his lunch up, he´ll go out. = B1: After he eats all of his lunch, he´ll go out.
     
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