Thursday, May 5, 2011

Phrasal Verb

Phrasal verbs are mainly used in spoken English and informal texts. (The more formal a conversation or text, the less phrasal verbs are found.)

Phrasal verbs consist of a verb plus a particle (preposition, adverb). The particle can change the meaning of the verb completely, e.g:

  • look up – consult a reference book (look a word up in a dictionary)
  • look for – seek (look for her ring)
  • look forward – anticipate with pleasure (look forward to meeting someone)

There are no rules that might explain how phrasal verbs are formed correctly - all you can do is look them up in a good dictionary and study their meanings. In our lists, you will find some frequently used phrasal verbs and their meanings.

Frequently Used Phrasal Verbs with:

Position of the Particle

The particle is placed either after the verb or after the object.


Write down the word. / Write the word down.

If the object is a pronoun, however, the particle has to be placed after the pronoun (object).


Write it down.

Exercise on Phrasal Verbs

Mixed Exercise 1

Complete the sentences.

  1. I often use Wikipedia t0 ______ _____ information.
  2. If you want to ______ _____ a bus in London, you will have to queue.
  3. Can I _____ _____ the TV? I want to watch the weather forecast.
  4. It is very hard to ______ _____ smoking.
  5. It is so dark in here, you can really ______ _____ your sunglasses now.
  6. Shall I _____ _____ and offer my seat to the old lady?
  7. With a few buckets of water, we ______ _____ the fire.
  8. Who will _______ _____ your cat when you're on holiday?
  9. Would you like to ______ _____your new dress today?
  10. At the next stop we have to _______ _____the bus and walk along the street to the cinema.
You can check your answer here

Have fun doing it! :)


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