to become greater, more powerful or larger in number All the pressure built up and he was off work for weeks with stress. The music builds up to a rousing climax. related noun build-up (1)
[usually passive] to give a very positive and enthusiastic description of somebody/something, often exaggerating your claims The play was built up to be a masterpiece but I found it very disappointing. related noun build-up (3)
to make somebody/yourself healthier or stronger You need more protein to build you up.
- 1 to create or develop something She's built up a very successful business. These finds help us build up a picture of life in the Middle Ages. I am anxious not to build up false hopes (= to encourage people to hope for too much). The gallery has built up a fine collection of contemporary art. We’ve built up good relationships with our clients.
- 2to make something higher or stronger than it was before The sea defences have been built up to ensure that such a disaster will not strike again.