soften up


Also found in: Idioms.
Related to soften up: draw

soften up

vb (adverb)
1. to make or become soft
2. (Military) (tr) to weaken (an enemy's defences) by shelling, bombing, etc
3. (tr) to weaken the resistance of (a person) by persuasive talk, advances, etc
Translations

w>soften up

vt sep
(lit)weich machen
(fig) person, oppositionmilde stimmen; (by flattery etc) → schmeicheln (+dat); customerkaufwillig stimmen; (by bullying) → einschüchtern, weichmachen; enemy, resistancezermürben; enemy positionschwächen; prisonerweichmachen
vi (material)weich werden; (person, attitude)nachgiebiger werden; to soften up on somebodyjdm gegenüber nachgiebig or schwach werden
References in periodicals archive ?
MINISTER James Reilly Sinn Fein's Caoimhghin O Caolain said leaks about the Budget were designed to soften up the public for more health cuts.
What is certain is that the deliberate leaks are designed to soften up public opinion in an effort to prepare people for the worst in the hope that cuts short of the worst may appear more palatable.