What Does Bring Up to Date Mean?

Bring Someone Up to Date Meaning

Definition: Give someone the latest news or information.

To bring someone up to date is make sure the person has the most recent information, usually because he or she missed when it was originally shared.

If you bring something up to date, you bring it to more modern standards. For example, “The old toilets were brought up to date.”

Origin of Bring Up to Date

This phrase originated from the field of bookkeeping when the bookkeeper had to make sure his records were all current.

up to datedThe earliest incarnations of the phrase were variations of “up to the date of…,” which we can see in the June 1797 Gazette of the United States:

  • But he believed, if the account was brought up to the present date, the French populations would be ten times the amount of the British.

and an 1842 edition of The New York Herald:

  • It will be remembered that the news by the overland mail, which was brought by the Britannia, was up to the date of April 12th…

It wasn’t until the early 1900s that we begin to see the phrase in its current form, as in The Minneapolis Journal from May 1905:

  • Advice and opinions of the famous men of one hundred years ago are brought up to date.

Examples of Bring Up to Date

how to bring up to date definitionIn the modern day, people use this expression when sharing news, as in,

  • We had lunch, and I brought her up to date on everything new with my family.

It can also be used to add new information, as in,

  • He went through the files and filled in missing information, bringing the records up to date.

Lastly, it can be used to bring more modern standards to out-of-date things, as in,

  • They were still heating their house with just a wood stove; it needed to be brought up to date, so they installed a furnace.

More Examples

  • HB420, which is currently in committee, would bring up to date the law that has fallen behind in the age of smartphones, in which every man, woman, and child is able to film and record video. –The Delaware County Daily Times
  • Such hitches remind Humphries just how much the technological side of theatre has changed – and why Her Majesty’s [Theatre] needs to be brought up-to-date. –Herald Sun


To bring someone up to date is to share the latest developments and make sure that he or she has the most current information.