Vocabulary, Grammar. 09.03.2015
Grammar Teacher

Phrasal verbs: грамматика

Автор: Grammar Teacher

Hello, my dear readers!

Last time I told you about dependent prepositions (depend on, listen to). But sometimes, there are prepositions which completely change the meaning of the verb itself! What does “fall” mean? What does “out” mean? Well, and do you know what “fall out” means? Read and find out. 

Phrasal verbs: грамматика 
Must-know phrasal verbs
A phrasal verb is a verb with one or several prepositions. Unlike verbs with dependent prepositions, they have a completely new meaning. 
For example, fall – падать. Out – из. По логике – fall out = падать из. Well, we can say that Tom fell out of a tree. But also, fall out = have an argument with someone. Jane and Michael fell out last year and now they’re not friends anymore. So you see, phrasal verbs often have more than one meaning.  Some meanings are easy to understand and remember, they are quite literal (буквальные). Some meanings, however, are not literal, and you just need to remember them. 

Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 2

I have chosen some must-know phrasal verbs that you simply have to find out about!  (btw, find out is a phrasal verb. It means to learn new information.) 

Phrasal verb



Get on

To get on a bus, get inside a bus

We couldn't get on because there were lots of people on the bus.

To have a good relationship with so

I don't get on very well with Sarah.

Come back


When are you coming back?

Take off

When the plane starts moving and flies up

I was afraid of flying but when the plane took off I stopped being nervous!

To stop wearing clothes

I want to take off this sweater, it's so uncomfortable!

Fill in

Write in the necessary information

Can you fill in this blank please?

Wake up

To stop sleeping

When did you wake up?

Put on

To start wearing clothes

When I put on my jeans I understood that I don't want to wear them today.

Fall out

Have an argument

I don't want to fall out with you!

Drop by

Come for a visit

Joe promised to drop by next week.

Break down

Stop functioning

My car broke down this morning, that's why I was late to work.

Bring up

Start discussing a topic

Why did you bring that up?

Calm down


Please calm down!

Call off


Why did you call off our meeting?

Cheer up

Make happier

Do you want me to cheer you up?

Check something out

Look at

Check out that cute car!

Cut in


I hate it when people cut in with useless information!

Dress up

Wear nice and beautiful clothes

I want to dress up tonight.

Fall down

Fall to the ground

Careful! You can fall down that way.

Find out


What did you find out?

Get over something

Recover from

I got over the flu.

Give up

Stop trying

Don't give up!

Grow up

Become an adult

Everybody grows up except Peter Pan.

Hang on

Wait for a short time

Hang on a sec.

Log in

Sign in (to a website)

Are you logged in?

Log off/out

Sign out of a website or database

Log off after you finish using our computer.

Pass away


He passed away last year.

Pass out

Faint, lose consciousness

She passes out at the sight of blood.

Try something on

To sample clothes

I tried on this skirt but I don’t like it.

Turn up

Arrive (usually unexpectedly)

The neighbor's dog turned up at our doorstep.

Think over

Think about something for a time, consider

I need to think things over.


Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 5

Some phrasal verbs have more than one preposition. Here are some of them: 

Phrasal verb



Look forward to

To be excited about something that will happen in the future

I look forward to our next meeting.

Look down on

Think that someone is not as cool as you are

He looked down on me.

Come up with

Have an idea

What have you come up with?

Put up with

Bear, tolerate

She has to put up with a lot of stuff at work.

Look up to

Admire and respect

I look up to my parents.

Keep up with

Do something fast (at the same speed as someone else)

You're walking too fast! I can’t keep up with you!

Run out of

There is no more of something

We need to buy bread, we’ve run out of it.

Make up with

Start being friends again after a fight

We've made up with Julie, we missed her.

Come down with

Become sick

She's come down with the flu.

Cut down on

do less of something

I need to cut down on sugar.

Break up with

Stop having a relationship

Kate broke up with Mark.


Of course these are not all the phrasal verbs in the English language. There are many more! We have some of them on our website, you can check them out here. 

When we put a phrasal verb into another tense, we change only the verb part. So if you want to say “calm down” in past simple, it will be “calmed down”. She calmed down after I told her my plans. 
There are verbs which need an object and verbs which don’t. For example, “fall down” doesn’t need an object. He fell down. No object. We call such verbs ‘intransitive’. There’s no one receiving the action. 
Transitive phrasal verbs need a direct object. For example, to turn off. You can’t just turn off, you need to turn off SOMETHING. 
• Turn off the TV please! 
• Turn the TV off please! 
Both sentences are correct. As you see, we can divide the phrasal verb by putting the object in the middle. Such verbs are called separable, the verb and the preposition can be separated in a sentence. 
“The TV” is the object of the sentence. What if I say “it” instead of “the TV”? “It” is a pronoun. Which sentence is correct? 

Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 7

• Turn it off please!
• Turn off it please! 
Only the first one is correct. If I can split the phrasal verb, if it is separable (I can put “TV” in the middle and after the phrasal verb) I must put pronouns in the middle, I have to separate the phrasal verb if I use a pronoun as the object. I can’t say “turn off + pronoun”, I must say “turn + pronoun + off”. 
However, there are some verbs which cannot be divided, which are inseparable. For example “look for”. Can I say “I looked the book for”? No, I can’t. I can only say “I looked for the book”. In this case, if I say “it” instead of “the book”, I’ll put “it” after the phrasal verb, because I cannot split it. I looked for it, I looked for the book. 
For a list of separable and inseparable phrasal verbs, go here  
I think now you will be able to understand these jokes :) 
Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 8

 Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 9

 Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 10 

 Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 11
   Phrasal verbs: грамматика - 12

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