carry on

[carry on] {v.} 1. To work at; be busy with; manage.

Bill and his father carried on a hardware business.

Mr. Jones and Mr. Smith carried on a long correspondence with each other.

2. To keep doing as before; continue.

After his father died, Bill carried on with the business.

The colonel told the soldiers to carry on while he was gone.

Though tired and hungry, the Scouts carried on until they reached camp.

Compare: BEAR UP (2), GO ON.

3a. {informal} To behave in a noisy, foolish, and troublesome manner.

The boys carried on in the swimming pool until the lifeguard ordered them out.

3b. {informal} To make too great a show of feeling, such as anger, grief, and pain.

John carried on for ten minutes after he hit his thumb with the hammer.

Compare: TAKE ON (4).

4. {informal} To act in an immoral or scandalous way; act disgracefully.

The townspeople said that he was carrying on with a neighbor girl.