Phrasal Verbs that are likely to Elevate Your Fluency in English

Saturday, 31 July, 2021

Phrasal Verbs Part I

Abide by

  • Accept or follow a decision or rule
  • We have to ABIDE BY what the court says. 

Account for 

  • To explain. 
  • They had to ACCOUNT FOR all the money that had gone missing. 

Ache for 

  • Want something or someone a lot. 
  • My partner's been away for a fortnight- I am ACHING FOR her. 

Act on 

  • To take action because of something like information received. 
  • The police were ACTING ON a tip from an informer and caught the gang red-handed. 

Act on

  • Affect.  
  • The medicine only ACTS ON infected tissue.

Act out

  • Perform something with actions and gestures..
  • They ACTED OUT the story on stage.    

Act out 

  • Express emotion in your behaviour. 

Act out

  •  Express emotion in your behaviour. 
  • Their anger is ACTED OUT in their antisocial behaviour. 

Act up 

  • Behave badly or strangely.
  •  My computer's ACTING UP; I think I might have a virus. 

Act upon 

  • To take action because of something like information received. 
  • The police were ACTING UPON a tip-off.

 Act upon 

  • Affect.
  •  The enzyme ACTS UPON certain proteins. 

Add on 

  • Include in a calculation. You have to ADD the VAT ON to the price they give. 

Add up 

  • To make a mathematical total. We ADDED UP the bill to check it was correct. 

Add up

  •  Be a satisfactory explanation for something. 
  • She explained why the work wasn't ready, but her story doesn't ADD UP. 

Add up to 

  • Have a certain result. 
  • Trains delays are getting worse and with the high fares, it all ADDS UP TO misery for the commuters. 

Add up to

  •  Come to a certain amount or figure. 
  • The total costs ADD UP TO several million euros.

 Agree with 

  • Affect- usually used in the negative to show that something has had a negative effect, especially if it makes you feel bad.
  •  I feel terrible- that food didn't AGREE WITH my stomach. 

Aim at 

  • To target. The magazine is AIMED AT teenagers. 

Aim at

  •  Intend to achieve. 
  • They're AIMING AT reducing costs by ten percent. 

 Ask around 

  • Ask a number of people for information or help. 
  • I have no idea, but I'll ASK AROUND at work and see if anyone can help. 

Ask around

  •  Invite someone. 
  • We ASKED them AROUND for dinner. 

Ask for 

  • To provoke a negative reaction. You're ASKING FOR trouble. 

Ask for

  •  Request to have or be given.I ASKED FOR the menu. 

Ask in 

  • To invite somebody into your house.' Jon's at the door.' 'ASK him IN.' 

Ask out 

  • To invite someone for a date. 
  • He wanted to ASK her OUT but was too shy. 

Ask over

  •  Invite. They have ASKED us OVER for drinks on Friday. 

Ask round

  •  Invite someone. 
  • We ASKED John ROUND for diner. 

Auction off 

  • Sell something in an auction. 
  • They AUCTIONED OFF their property as they were heavily in debt. 

Back away

  •  Retreat or go backwards. The crowd BACKED AWAY when the man pulled a knife. 

Back down 

  • Retract or withdraw your position or proposal in an argument. 
  • She refused to BACK DOWN and was fired. 

Back into 

  • Enter a parking area in reverse gear. 
  • He prefers to BACK his car INTO the garage. 

Back off 

  • Retreat. 
  • The police told the protesters to BACK OFF. 

Back out

  •  Fail to keep an arrangement or promise. 
  • He BACKED OUT two days before the holiday so we gave the ticket to his sister

 Back out of 

  • Fail to keep an agreement, arrangement. 
  • She BACKED OUT OF the agreement at the last minute. 

Back out of 

  • Exit a parking area in reverse gear. 
  • She BACKED the Rolls OUT OF its parking space. 

Back up 

  • Make a copy of the computer data. 
  • You should always BACK UP important 

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