Phrasal verbs

Phrasal verbs

To learn about:

  • phrasal verbs
  • and the position of phrasal verbs particles

please visit this page:

Phrasal Verbs

This page will list the frequently used phrasal verbs

Frequently used phrasal verbs

phrasal verbs

This is a list of phrasal verbs and their meanings arranged in alphabetical order

M - N - O- P - Q - S - T - U - V - W - Y - Z
make for
to result in or make possible
Having faster computers would make for a more efficient system.
make off
to leave quickly, usually in order to escape
The burglars made off before the police arrived.
make out
recognise, distinguish
I can't make out your writing.
make up
constitute, form
Road accident victims make up almost a quarter of the hospital's patients.
invent a lie
My son was always really good at making up stories.
put together, prepare
The maid will make up your room later.
apply cosmetics
For the film, they made him up as an Indian.
make up for
No amount of money can make up for the death of a child.
mix up
I sometimes mix the verb tenses up.
name after
name a child using another family member's name 
I was named after my grandfather.
occur to
pop into one's mind, come to one's mind 
It didn't occur to us that we had left the iron on.


pass away
After battling cancer for several years, he finally passed away at the age of 87.
pass on
Please pass this message on to your co-workers.
pay back
If I loan you money, will you pay me back.
pick out
Diane picked out a lovely dress for the dance.
pick up
to lift an object with the hands
Keep your back straight when you lift the TV up.
point out
I'd like to point out that figures in column two might be outdated.
pull out
when I arrived to the station the train was pulling out. So I had to wait for the next train.
put across
express in an understandable way
I thought Ms. Smith put her ideas across rather clearly in the meeting.
put back
put something to its proper place
Will you put the books back when you've finished with them?
put by
save for later use
I try to put by a few pounds every week.
put down
Thousands of troops were needed to put down the uprising.
put down to
give as a reason, attribute to
I put the children's bad behaviour down to the fact that they were tired.
put forward
suggest, propose
The proposals that you have put forward deserve serious consideration.

put in for

be a candidate for an election

I'm putting in for a job at the hospital.
put on
dress oneself with
Put your shoes on - we're going out.
gain (weight)
I'd expected to put weight on when I gave up smoking, but I didn't.
put off
The meeting has been put off for a week.

put out

extinguish (a fire, light)

The firemen managed to put the fire out.
put through
connect somebody by phone
Could you put me through to customer services, please?
put up
They're planning to put a hotel up where the museum used to be.
raise (hand)
Put up your hand if you want to give your answer.
put up with
tolerate, accept
He's so moody - I don't know why she puts up with him.
quiet down
be quiet, or cause to be quiet
The neighbors told us to quiet down last night or they would call the police.
ring up
Jack rung me up last night at 3:00 in the morning.
run after
Why do dogs run after cats?
run away
escape, flee
The child ran away because her parents beat her.
run down
knock down, collide with
Two masked men on motorbikes tried to run me down.
feel weak due to overwork
Since he took that extra job, he's really run himself down.
run in
imprison, catch
If the police run someone in, they find them and take them to a police station.
run into
meet by chance
Graham ran into someone he used to know at school the other day.
run off
escape, flee, leave
You can't run off (home) now, just when I need you!
run out of
exhaust one's stock
I've run out of milk/money/ideas/patience.
run over
The water/The bath is running over - quick, turn the taps off.
pass over, knock down
I'm afraid we've just run a rabbit over.
run up against
meet with difficulties
The community centre scheme has run up against strong local opposition
see off 
say good-bye to someone at the beginning of their trip (at the airport, train station)
Did you see your sister off at the train station?
see to
make sure something happens, arrange
I'll see to it that Mr. Ramirez gets your message.
sit down
have a seat
Sit down! We're having dinner.
take after
resemble a parent or relative
I take after my father. Who do you take after?
take in
He was taken in by his kindness.
take off
When he saw me, he took off in the other direction.
I took off my jacket because it was very hot.
throw away
to get rid of something that you do not want any more
So when are you going to throw away those old magazines of yours?
try out
Try out this massage chair - it feels great!
try on
to put on a piece of clothing to discover if it fits you or if you like it
Try on the shoes to see if they fit.
turn down
He offered her a trip to Australia but she turned it/him down.
turn in
to take a criminal to the police, or to go to them yourself to admit a crime
The hit-and-run driver turned himself in to the police the day after the accident
turn off
switch off
Turn off the light and go to sleep!
turn on
switch on
Turn on the TV. The baseball game starts in a few minutes.
turn out
switch off
Turn out the light before you go to bed.
turn up
to discover something, especially information, after a lot of searching
See what you can turn up about the family in the files.
use up
use all of something
I used up all of the soap, so we need to buy some more
veer away from
stay away from, avoid
I veer away from the same old summer blockbuster films.
wait on
Each waitress waits on three different tables in the restaurant.
wake up
Wake up. It's time to get ready for work.

watch out

be careful
Watch out! There's a rattlesnake!


wear off
disappear after a period of time
The affects of the medicine will wear off after a few hours.
wear out
cause to be very tired
Her three kids wore me out.
work out
I work out three times a week at the fitness center
I hope you two can work out your problems.
write down
Write down the directions so you don't forget them.

yak on

to continue talking in an annoying way ("on" can be repeated for emphasis)
He just yakked on and on and on.
zoom in
You need a telephoto lens to zoom in..

1 - 2

M - N - O- P - Q - S - T - U - V - W - Y - Z
Exercises on phrasal verbs