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  1. #1
    Annakrutitskaya is offline Newbie
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    Default etymology and meaning of bang up against; bang-up

    Dear Teachers,

    Please, help me to understand the meaning and the way both idioms are constructed, why this or that additional verb is used with them - the logical meaning behind them, so I could understand the difference, which is so big, and how to use them correctly.

    1. Bang up - means "to crash" (skip the version about the jail) - He banged up his car in the race.

    2. Bang up against smth - means "severely run into something", correct?

    3. Any successor system will bang up against the same difficulties - any system will be crashed because of the difficulties?

    4. We ran bang up against more trouble - we unexpectedly faced even more trouble? Why do we use the verb "ran" here and how is it combined with "bang up against"?

    5. They came bang up against fierce opposition - they unexpectedly ran into a fierce opposition? why do we use "came" here?

    6. David did a bang-up job baking the birthday cake - meaning that he did a succesfull job baking the cake?

    Thank you!
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 10-May-2013 at 08:02. Reason: Numbering the sentences for convenience.

  2. #2
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: etymology and meaning of bang up against; bang-up

    Welcome to the forums.

    'He was banged up in jail' is a well-known idiom, but you told me to skip that.

    According to the Free Dictionary (click on the underlined words), only #1 and perhaps #2 are idiomatic — though rarely used in my experience — whilst the other expressions containing 'bang' are non-standard or slang terms.

    #4 is sometimes expressed as 'We ran slap-bang into more trouble'.

    I would recommend that you don't bother using any of these terms. They are not common, and many more elegant alternatives can always be found.

    Rover
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 10-May-2013 at 08:22.

  3. #3
    Annakrutitskaya is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: etymology and meaning of bang up against; bang-up

    Dear Rover_KE,
    Thank you for your help and for the editing of my post.
    Could you, please, name some more elegant alternatives? I would really appreciate it.

    Initially, I saw "bang up against" in a book "A Battle of Bretton Woods" and there it is used as "any successor system will bang up against same difficulties".
    Thank you!

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