up to no good


up to no good


  • to have an evil plan
  • to not be doing anything good for anybody
  • to be inclined towards making something worse through a planned effort

Example Sentences

  1. The children can be up to no good cooped up in that attic together for two hours. You must go up and check.
  2. I was up to no good when I asked you to come with me, I am admitting it now.
  3. You are up to no good, are you?
  4. Can you try to find out more about these plans? I think that the company is up to no good with releasing my gratuity amount.
  5. She is up to no good when she hides behind the curtains like this. I have to always have an eye on my toddler.
  6. The politician was up to no good and hence did not answer any questions relating to the allegations that he had made about the opposing party leader.
  7. I’m afraid she is up to no good spending all that time with her friends.


The phrase originated in the 15th century British English. It has been adopted by all native speakers over the years. It is generally associated with a mild playfulness but could just as easily point to nefarious and malicious behaviour.

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