prick up for learners of EnglishPowered by COBUILD
ergative phrasal verb & phrasal verb
If someone pricks up their ears or if their ears prick up, they listen eagerly when they suddenlyhear an interesting sound or an important piece of information. [VP n] ⇒ She stopped talking to prick up her ears. [VP] ⇒ ...ears which prick up at the mention of royalty.