A phrasal verb is a combination of a verb and a preposition, a verb and an adverb, or a verb with both an adverb and a preposition.

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mix subject up / get subject mixed up

Do the sentences below have the same meaning and are they both common? Shut up, you're mixing me up. Shut up, you're getting me mixed up.
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Can the phrasal verbs “bring about” and “bring off” be used interchangeably?

please would any one of you show me the difference between these two phrasal verbs. It is kind of nuance difference as I understood at first blush. I think that I know the meaning of bring about, it ...
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How did 'for' originate in 'to ask for'?

[OED:] 9. a. simply. To ask a thing. (Now more familiarly to ask for: see 16.) 16. a. To ask (after obs.) for a thing. OED appears to claim the equivalence of 9 and 16. However, 16 does ...
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30 views

Difference between “go” and “go down” or “grill” and “grill down” [closed]

I found a phrasal verb while I was reading my book but I didn't know its meaning. Well , I am going down to the park with some friends. We are going to grill some steaks down there. Why ...
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20 views

How did the postverbal prepositions originate in 'to treat of' and 'to treat on'?

[OED:] [2.] a. {intransitive} To deal with some matter in speech or writing; to discourse. (In quot. 1517 transf. of pictorial representation.) Const. of, formerly also on, upon. How did of or ...
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40 views

Using of phrases - to catch up with [closed]

If I have got too many things to do and very little time for it. Can I say " I can not catch up with all of these".
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47 views

Is “rub on” a phrasal verb or not?

I think the following sentences are all grammatical. So I am wondering whether there is a phrasal verb "rub on" that has the same meaning as "rub"-as-a-transitive-verb. If there is no phrasal verb, ...
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35 views

How did 'of' originate in 'to conceive of'?

[OED:] [8.] d. intr. to conceive of : To form or have a conception of, think of, imagine. I'm trying to compare 'to conceive' with (the prepositional verb) 'to conceive of'. To me, both appear to ...
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2answers
54 views

'want' vs 'want for' vs 'want of'

[OED:] want {verb} = 1. a. intr. To be lacking or missing; not to exist; not to be forthcoming; to be deficient in quantity or degree. In early use const. with dative or to. rare since the 17th ...
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101 views

Why can't you place pronouns after a phrasal verb?

Many phrasal verbs such as look up or knock out typically allow the object to be placed between the verb and proposition or to be placed afterward. For example, You can look my brother up on ...
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2answers
87 views

What does “throw in the fact” and “the escrow” mean? [closed]

I came across the following dialogue in an American TV show, but I do not understand the parts in bold. (A is a 40-year-old divorced woman who is trying to hide her real age and pretends to be 26; ...
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42 views

Which word order produces the more suitable sentence? [closed]

Which of the following is an appropriate sentence? Only he could see through the trick. Only he could see the trick through. According to me, the first one is right. Can you explain which one is ...
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2answers
129 views

Adverb position in “Listen carefully to what I say” [closed]

I've come across the phrase "Listen carefully to what I say" and I'm really not sure why carefully has gone in between listen and to. It doesn't happen with other verbs; you don't "switch carefully on ...
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2answers
34 views

What is the difference between the two phrases to meet you and meeting you? [closed]

Why the below one is correct? I look forward to meeting you. And why this one is wrong? I look forward to meet you. I generally do these mistakes in letter writing.
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68 views

“Made of” vs. “Made with”

What do they mean? How should I use them? Which one is more appropriate to what context? I was talking to a colleague of mine and we couldn't get to a consensus about what should we say when ...
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3answers
73 views

Meaning of new sub-entry added to the Oxford English Dictionary: “to have off”

I checked out the recent updates to the OED (Oxford English Dictionary) and noticed a new verb to have off that I couldn't figure out the exact meaning of. My questions are: Is to have off have the ...
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1answer
247 views

How to use the verb “overload” in a passive sentence [closed]

My sentence is "Do not overload the equipment" and I want to change it into "The equipment shouldn't be ..." form. How should the verb "overload" be used in this situation? Is it "overloaded" or ...
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3answers
66 views

“come on as” versus “come across as”

Would you say that both sentences sound correct? On the whole, I think you came ON as sincere and credible, and your soft-spoken demeanor, laced with a dash of wry humor, was quite charming. On the ...
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53 views

Pays back or pays off? [closed]

Are these two phrasal verbs expressing the same concept or 'pays back ' has a certain negative connotation?
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155 views

From where I was sitting … talk out of school … getting pretty chummy with the money [closed]

From the film Bad Teacher 2011: Amy Squirrel: Umm...I happened to be pedalling past the 7th Grade car wash this Saturday. Wally: Kill it! Can we talk about this later? Amy Squirrel: Later ...
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2answers
106 views

Can the element in a phrasal verb have a syntactic purpose?

I am trying to create a system for teaching ESL students phrasal verbs based on the concepts contributed by the element. (For example, "up" frequently contributes the idea of finality or completion). ...
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109 views

Could “Give in” mean “Hand over”? [closed]

Give in = hand in but does give in = hand over? and which of them are equal? and what's the differences?
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304 views

Interest ( someone ) in ( something )

This phrasal verb means to persuade someone when we try offering something. Examples : Can I interest you in coffee? Can I interest you in having a special relationship between us? Do native ...
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4answers
125 views

Word for a problem that goes away when a larger thing changes?

What is a word or expression for a problem has effectively gone away because of a larger change that makes the problem no longer a problem? I'm thinking "obviated" or "made unnecessary," but it ...
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10answers
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How to describe a person in a situation in which he does not completely know what he is doing?

How can we describe a person doing or communicating something without (really) knowing what he is doing or talking about? This could be either because of some indisposition like for example ...
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52 views

Keep up v. keep up with

Keep up generally means maintain a steady pace or maintain the height/production of something, but it seems sometimes keep up can appear without it's handy "with". Compare the following: 1. You need ...
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214 views

What should be the opposite of “going out”

I know it seems to be a simple answer but that's why I'm asking what should be, not what is. Going out is composed of two words, obviously. Each of these has its opposite. So if I were to take the ...
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45 views

Should we split “call together” & “gather together”?

When an organization sends invitations to companies for a planned conference, the verbs "gather together" and "call together" seem to be interchangable in this context. Should the object stay between ...
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105 views

Can verb 'grant' be used with preposition 'with?'

Could someone explain to me if the word 'grant' can be used with 'with' and what it means? (I checked with many dictionaries, but couldn't find an example used in that way.) example sentence in an ...
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97 views

phrasal verb: 'coffee up'

I want to know what phrasal verb(s) 'coffee up' (as in 'it's good to coffee up for the day') is modelled on. What does 'up' mean in such examples? I'd appreciate your help.
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69 views

Is saying “back to back” an AmE or BrE usage [duplicate]

I have been often intrigued by the phrase "back-to-back". Referring to "back" is reminiscent of the rear of the human body. I usually hear- back-to-back meetings
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63 views

requirements about or requirements for [closed]

i try to build a phrase in the context of Master application : We said : let me know if there are further requirements for my application . or let me know if there are further ...
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100 views

Difference between “turns out” and “turns out to be”

I'm not a native English speaker, hence I'm a little confused here. I want to know the difference between the two and also correct me if I'm saying it wrong here "It's turns out to be a conspiracy ...
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189 views

Word, expression for copying someone who inspires you

All of us have a person; our elder siblings or friends or any one who we are inspired by. For example my elder sister, I love the way she carries herself, her personality, her poise, that I try my ...
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143 views

Expressions or phrasal verbs for very boring

In AE, how could I say something is very boring? I know teenagers would say "it sucks" but is there anything else, phrasal verbs or expressions? If it's something local, I would also ask you to say ...
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148 views

Opposite of “to put off”

Is there any word, expression or phrasal verb I can use that has the opposite meaning of "put off"? The case I have in mind is this: The meeting would be on saturday, but a lot of things have ...
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78 views

How to construct acceptable phrasal verbs [closed]

Native speakers using Phrasal Verbs very frequently, because it can express a lot of meanings. but Is there any rule that I can follow to construct acceptable phrasal verbs?
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1answer
4k views

Difference between What are you up for tonight vs What are you up to tonight?

I wonder if my understanding of the meanings implied in these sentences is right. Besides, I would like to know how common they are in every day English and whether they can be used interchangeably ...
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4answers
842 views

Point someone to something

Is it correct to write something along the lines of "She pointed me to a book of X." in the sense of "making me aware of it", "bringing it to my attention"?
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3answers
281 views

What is a formal word meaning “paid off”?

I can not think of any way to say paid off in a formal way. Susan’s speech and struggle during those rough times has _______.
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To get on someone [closed]

My English is not very good as it is my second language, so I need a little help here. A cousin of mine came to my place to attend my sister's wedding. In our culture, bride to be is not supposed to ...
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126 views

Question about phrasal verbs

When looking up a word in my Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary recently, I noticed that there's a section for phrasal verbs at the end of the entry. The particular word was bow. When you take a ...
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1answer
69 views

Difference between 'get at' and 'get on at'

E.g. 'My boss is always getting on at me even if I haven't done anything wrong.' 'Her parents keep getting at her for skipping classes.' I'm wondering whether these phrasal verbs have ...
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1answer
66 views

What is the meaning of “gassed for”? [closed]

I was reading a comment on ELU and it is... ... when you've been gassed for your oral surgery. Is it an idiomatic thing to say "gassed for or gassed up"?
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1answer
144 views

A song came on tv

I'm not a native English speaker, so I wanted to ask something. How would you say that 'As i was zapping through the channels, and this song came on'. Is this a correct sentence? Basically what I ...
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1answer
73 views

Why it is not possible to put a noun object after the particle when the object refers to a person with some phrasal verbs ? Is there a specific rule?

For example: X pulled off the sweater or X pulled the sweater off but let someone off the hook not let off the hook someone to knock over the car or to knock the car over and to knock the child ...
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27 views

When to use -ed or not as part of objective portion of sentence

Which one of the following usage is correct and why? I would like to have the content changed to the following: ... OR I would like to have the content change to the following: ... The ...
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118 views

What does “Back on for today” mean?

I received the following email from a colleague, who is a native speaker of American English: Back on for today. Starting at [10:00]. What does "back on for today" mean?
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101 views

What does “the take-up” mean?

I couldn't find the proper meaning in the dictionaries. Could anyone explain to me what does the author mean by "the take-up" here in this excerpt? There has been a trend towards setting the ...
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1answer
28 views

Brush up on as a Tri-Part

Is "brush up on" technically a tri-part phrasal verb?