Phrasal verbs

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Phrasal verbs

  1. 1. Phrasal VerbsPhrasal verbs are a group of multi-word verbs made from a verb plus another wordor words. Many people refer to all multi-word verbs as phrasal verbs. On thesepages we make a distinction between three types of multi-word verbs: prepositionalverbs, phrasal verbs and phrasal-prepositional verbs. On this page we lookat phrasal verbs proper.Phrasal verbs are made of:verb + adverbPhrasal verbs can be: intransitive (no direct object) transitive (direct object)Here are some examples of phrasal verbs: phrasal meaning examples verbs direct objectintransitive get up rise from I dont like to get up.phrasal bedverbs break cease to He was late because his down function car broke down.transitive put off postpone We will have to put off thephrasal meeting.verbs turn down refuse They turned down my offer.Separable Phrasal VerbsWhen phrasal verbs are transitive (that is, they have a direct object), we canusually separate the two parts. For example, "turn down" is a separable phrasalverb. We can say: "turn down my offer" or "turn my offer down". Look at thistable:transitive phrasal verbs are They turned down my offer.separable They turned my offer down.However, if the direct object is a pronoun, we have no choice. We must separatethe phrasal verb and insert the pronoun between the two parts. Look at thisexample with the separable phrasal verb "switch on":
  2. 2. direct object John switched on the These are allpronounsmust go radio. possible.between the twoparts of transitive John switched the on.phrasal verbs radio John switched it on. John switched on it. This is not possible.Separable or inseparable phrasal verbs? Some dictionaries tell you when phrasalverbs are separable. If a dictionary writes "look (something) up", you know that thephrasal verb "look up" is separable, and you can say "look something up" and "lookup something". Its a good idea to write "something/somebody" as appropriate inyour vocabulary book when you learn a new phrasal verb, like this: get up break down put something/somebody off turn sthg/sby downThis tells you whether the verb needs a direct object (and where to put it).Prepositional VerbsPrepositional verbs are a group of multi-word verbs made from a verb plus anotherword or words. Many people refer to all multi-word verbs as phrasal verbs. Onthese pages we make a distinction between three types of multi-word verbs:prepositional verbs, phrasal verbs and phrasal-prepositional verbs. On this page welook at prepositional verbs.Prepositional verbs are made of:verb + prepositionBecause a preposition always has an object, all prepositional verbs have directobjects. Here are some examples of prepositional verbs:prepositional meaning examplesverbs direct objectbelieve in have faith in the I believe in God. existence oflook after take care of He is looking the dog. after
  3. 3. talk about discuss Did you talk me? aboutwait for await John is waiting Mary. forPrepositional verbs cannot be separated. That means that we cannot put the directobject between the two parts. For example, we must say "look after the baby". Wecannot say "look the baby after":prepositional verbs Who is looking after the This is possible.areinseparable baby? Who is looking the This babyafter? is notpossible.It is a good idea to write "something/somebody" in your vocabulary book when youlearn a new prepositional verb, like this: believe in something/somebody look after sthg/sbyThis reminds you that this verb needs a direct object (and where to put it).Phrasal-prepositional VerbsPhrasal-prepositional verbs are a small group of multi-word verbs made from a verbplus another word or words. Many people refer to all multi-word verbs as phrasalverbs. On these pages we make a distinction between three types of multi-wordverbs: prepositional verbs, phrasal verbs and phrasal-prepositional verbs. On thispage we look at phrasal-prepositional verbs.Phrasal-prepositional verbs are made of:verb + adverb + prepositionLook at these examples of phrasal-prepositional verbs:phrasal- meaning examplesprepositional verbs direct objectget on with have a friendly He doesnt get on his wife. relationship with withput up with tolerate I wont put up your with attitude.look forward to anticipate with I look forward seeing you.
  4. 4. pleasure torun out of use up, exhaust We have run out eggs. ofBecause phrasal-prepositional verbs end with a preposition, there is always a directobject. And, like prepositional verbs, phrasal-prepositional verbs cannot beseparated. Look at these examples:phrasal-prepositional verbs are We ran out of fuel.inseparable We ran out of it.Now check your understanding »It is a good idea to write "something/somebody" in your vocabulary book when youlearn a new phrasal-prepositional verb, like this: get on with somebody put up with sthg/sby run out of somethingThis reminds you that this verb needs a direct object (and where to put it).

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