Questions tagged [phrasal-verbs]

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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What does “come in” mean in the following context?

where does the Pro in iPad Pro come in? Microphones come in an assortment of configurations to meet a variety of uses. Does it means to function as some kind of contributor? Or does it mean to become ...
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Reference Request on Preposition Fronting

Currently reading "A Student's Introduction to English Grammar" by Geoffrey K. Pullum and Rodney Huddleston. Consider the following contrast between the phrasal verbs ask for and come across....
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“Try on some of them” or “Try some of them on”?

I’ve learnt that some phrasal verbs such as “pick up” or “try on” require us to put the object, especially when it is a pronoun, between the verb and preposition. Is it also possible to say “You ...
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“how to deal with the problem” vs “what to do with the problem” [closed]

He knows how to deal with the problem. He knows what to do with the problem. Can we switch between " how" and " what"? Why and why not?
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“Covered in” or “Covered with” trash [duplicate]

The mountain is covered in trash The mountain is covered with trash I find both of them correct but I can't say for sure. Is "covered in" or "covered with" more suitable in this ...
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How you say to take notes/information in this context?

The idea is that take notes means to store info about something, so is this context correct? I placed an order, but they didn't note well my info. When you are taking somebody's info, how do you say ...
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It is a question about phrasal verbs related to perspective

Let's imagine a situation in which you have people being caught and going to jail. You can say " they are taking people into jail". Now the first question: is this sentence correct when I use the ...
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What does “not to look over the best scenes” mean in the following sentence?

... a detailed analysis will help them to notice the most important film elements and not to look over the best scenes. I think that means that a good review of a movie (the full text is about that) ...
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Why can't we say “sign in into”?

When it comes to the sentence Sign in to your account, I understand why it is more proper to say sign in to as opposed to sign into. Sign in is a phrasal verb and to is the preposition. However, I ...
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Why does “for that” change the meaning if combined with “up,” but not with “down”?

(1) I'm up for that = someone stating their own interest/availability for what "that" refers to Bob: "Hey, wanna go get coffee?" Zack: "Yeah man, I'm up for that." (2) I'm up = a) a person ...
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Using “act on” like an American

I would like learn more about the phrasal verb "act on" in English. I found this while looking for examples: (act on/upon something) to do something because you have been given information, ...
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How would you describe a car kicking up clouds of dust as an adverb of a car heading somewhere?

I am trying to translate a sentence from Turkish to English. I'm almost satisfied and it is something along the lines of A black car kicking up clouds of dust was seen heading to the city from a ...
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The use of the phrasal verb “pay off” in context

Tell me please if it is apt to use the phrasal verb in the following conext. The tablet was expensive, but I don't regret buying it, because it is paying off. What I mean is that the tablet proved ...
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Phrasal verbs as hyphenated adjectives

So I recently had a question of how to translate a seemingly simple phrase which gave rise to a really puzzling dilemma. The phrase itself was "the eye which had been operated on", it was ...
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Does the phrase “who's in?” or “I'm in!” exist in (informal) English?

I really think I've heard it in some American sitcom/sitcoms, meaning something like participating in. "I want to play football. Who's in?" — "Great idea, I'm in!" Does it really exist, or am I wrong? ...
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What does 'for' mean in 'We are done for'?

There is an English expression do for, which means to kill, to execute, to ruin, to defeat etc. and this expression seems to always be used in passive voice: e.g.) We are done for. I understand this ...
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Do components of a phrasal verb still have a meaning each?

Do components of a phrasal verb still have a meaning each or have a meaning together? For example, ‘look down on’: ‘to think of or treat (someone or something) as unimportant or not worthy of respect’ ...
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How do native speakers think about phrasal verbs?

I would like to ask a question about phrasal verbs. Do native english speakers think about the meaning of each individual word of the phrasal verb when they will say it or they just think about the ...
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Preposition to use with the phrase “come to an understanding”

So, I'm to translate a sentence to English. It's something like: We've succeeded in coming to an understanding ______ all questions discussed. I suppose that I should use either about or in to ...
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Is “catch up” used in formal language as in “We will catch up sometime”?

I wrote "we will catch up sometime" to one of my new friends. When I searched the Internet I found that people used it in informal situations. Is it okay to use this in formal writing as I did since ...
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“Replace with” versus “replace by”

I often see "replace with" and "replace by" used interchangeably, but this doesn't sound right to me: I replaced that component by this one. I would use "with" in such a sentence. "By" only seems ...
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What's the meaning of 'out' when it comes after a verb ?

What's the difference between a verb like read and read out or shout and shout out and so on? How does "out" change the meaning of verbs?
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meaning of “Calmly and deliberately, she cut up his suits one by one.” [closed]

In the definition of "deliberately" in Cambridge English Dictionary, the second meaning which is "slowly and carefully" has an example: Calmly and deliberately, she cut up his ...
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Getting as set off by it

I'm reading an article about anxiety. The author says that when people feel anxious, they try to make themselves feel better by applying all kinds of coping techniques (e.g. deep breathing). Then it ...
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What is the meaning of the verb “step across”? [closed]

I am quoting from The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, The Reigate Squires by Arthur Conan Doyle :"The colonel waved his hand towards my friend and the inspector bowed.'We thought that perhaps you ...
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Carry on vs Carry out

Is it With enough light, plants carry out a normal life cycle or With enough light, plants carry on a normal life cycle I'm confused because I'm not getting the exact difference between ...
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A verb phrase “[verb] up” meaning someone is easily buying whatever he sees on TV

I came across this phrase "[verb] up" twice on The Guardian Reader's comments section when readers were talking about someone tends to not raise much objection to whatever the person is told or ...
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What's a phrasal verb that means pretending to be nice in expectation of getting something in return?

I want to find a phrasal verb that means pretending to be nice/friendly to someone because you think he/she will help you do something.
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set to vs set at

When talking about odds, say in sports, should I say "Betn1 set Team A's odds at 10/1" or "Betn1 set Team A's odds to 10/1"?
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Following on from vs Following up on

I just want to understand the difference between "Following up on & Following on from". Is it exactly the same meaning? Here you have an example: Following on from your email below ...
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What is the correct way to say ? Let me put my point or let me put up my point

I would like to know what seems more accurate. Let me put my point. Let me put up my point. I know that "Put up" is a phrasal verb which definitely have scenarios to be used more appropriately but ...
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“Open onto” vs. “open into”

When is one preferred over the other? This is in the context of the door to a large room. My sense is that "into" is preferred for closed spaces and "onto" for open spaces. This ...
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Why do some verbs have “directions” as adverbs?

I recently noticed how many verbs have "directions" as adverbs: "look up", "find out", "talk down", "figure out", "walk up", "look down&...
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What to say when someone's answer is not related to our question or at least we think it's not? [duplicate]

I would say: "How's that related to my question ?" Please answer for both formal and informal cases
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“Contribute for” or “Contribute to” or “Contribute on” or “Contribute in”

We said : I do want to thank Mr. Foulen and Mr. Felten who contribute for server hosting . or I do want to thank Mr. Foulen and Mr. Felten who contribute to server hosting . or I do ...
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“Cater to” vs. “cater for”

Is there any difference between "cater to" and "cater for"? Which is better in this context: The dramatist must cater to the taste of the audience. The dramatist must cater for the taste of the ...
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Word for: Sleep until some bad situation/feeling subsides or ends

When one waits until some difficulty has passed, we say "wait something out". Is there a word/expression in English for sleeping until your hunger, pain, or negative emotions subside?
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How do we tell the difference between a prepositional phrase and a particle phrase?

From the Farlex Grammar Book, their main difference is that particles cannot introduce a prepositional phrase-a preposition + its object-while a preposition always does. Please look over these ...
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Is the verb for this gesture “wave off?”

Here is the definition: to wave off To dismiss or refuse by waving the hand or arm: waved off his invitation to join the group. But can "wave off" also be used for this gesture, ...
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What does “urge to kill” mean?

I've got an answer to my comment at Stack Overflow, and I don't get what it means. I've googled and looked over several dictionaries with no help. Seems like it is some specific slang/phrasal verb, ...
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What's the difference between chip away and chip away AT something? [closed]

I've been trying to identify the difference in usage between saying chip away and chip away at something but I can't see any. The sentences in dictionaries all seem like they could accept both. So my ...
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823 views

'reflect back on' or 'reflect on' some event in the past?

As the title suggests, should I use "reflect back on" or "reflect on" when talking about something in the past? For example: I find myself reflecting on the journey that has led ...
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What is the origin of extra prepositions added after verbs in Indian English?

It seems that speakers of Indian English often add prepositions to create phrasal verbs in situations where the verb would have been sufficient on its own. Some examples I have noticed: to “pass out” ...
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Difference between TAKE UP and TAKE ON (= to begin to do something)

Could anyone please give me the answer of the english exercise below and help me tell apart take up and take on, which both mean beginning to do something? I appreciate your help with this exercise. ...
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Is “use to” a phrasal verb?

I know the answer seems pretty obvious, but I looked everywhere I could and found no answer. I found no reliable source clearly stating that “use to” is a phrasal verb. Allow me to explain to you why ...
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Why do we say “put out a fire”?

I came across this in an EFL text book, in an exercise that required the student to link a phrasal verb with the correct object, and it struck me as not at all obvious. The most common usage of 'out' ...
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Interview answer

Dears, Could you please help with the sentence below, which phrasal verb and verb to use? My goal at this point is to capitalize upon/ on new opportunities for career development, looking for/ ...
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Phrasal verb: Wash upon

Non-native english speaker here. The context is songwriting. Can a tide "wash upon" someone or something?
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Phrasal verb “scale out”

I received an email from my advisor and he uses the verb "scale out". Since I am not an english native speaker, I tried to find the definition on the web but didn't find anything useful. The ...

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