Grammar Lesson

List of 700 Phrasal Verbs explained with examples


What is a Phrasal Verb?

A phrasal verb is a verb constructed from two or three parts: a verb and an adverb or preposition. These adverbs and prepositions are usually called particles when they are used in a phrasal verb.

Most phrasal verbs are formed from a small number of verbs (for example: get, go, come, put and set) and a small number of particles (for example: away, out, off, up and in).

Phrasal verbs sometimes have meanings that you can easily guess (for example, sit down or look for). However, in most cases their meanings are quite different from the meanings of the verb they are formed from.
For example, hold up can mean ‘to cause a delay’ or ‘to try to rob someone’. The original meaning of hold (for example, to hold something in your hands) no longer applies.

Read more about Phrasal verbs in this lesson : Phrasal verbs – Form, Meaning, Grammar, and Style.

Transitive or Intransitive?

There are five main types of phrasal verb. These are:

1. Intransitive phrasal verbs (= phrasal verbs which do not need an object).
For example: You’re driving too fast. You ought to slow down.

2. Transitive phrasal verbs (= phrasal verbs which must have an object) where the object can come in one of two positions:
(a) Between the verb and the particle(s). For example: I think I’ll put my jacket on. or
(b) After the particle. For example: I think I’ll put on my jacket.

However, if the object is a pronoun (he, she, it, etc), it must usually come between the verb and the particle.
For example: I think I’ll put it on. (NOT I think I’ll put on it.)

3. Transitive phrasal verbs where the object must come between the verb and the particle. For example: Our latest designs set our company apart from our rivals.

4. Transitive phrasal verbs where the object must come after the particle. For example: John takes after his mother.
Why do you put up with the way he treats you?

5. Transitive phrasal verbs with two objects, one after the verb and one after the particle.
For example: They put their success down to good planning.

Some transitive phrasal verbs can be used in the passive, but the object cannot come between the verb and the particle. For example:

Active: The soldiers blew up the bridge / The soldiers blew the bridge up.
Passive: The bridge was blown up by the soldiers.

Active: Switch the lights off before you leave / Switch off the lights before you leave.
Passive: The lights must be switched off before you leave.

Active: It’s time they did away with these silly rules.
Passive: It’s time these silly rules were done away with. (where the subject is either not known or not needed).

A dictionary such as the Merriam Webster Dictionary or the Macmillan English Dictionary will clearly show you the way you should use each phrasal verb.

Watch and Learn

This video could help you if you want to understand how these multi-word verbs work before reading the Phrasal verbs list.

It is a video presented by Pr. Alexander, the owner of English Professionally youtube channel, where you can see the main meaning of phrasal verbs – some kind of definition provided by the author.

Different prepositions are mentioned in the video, most common ones (get, take, go, come, look, run, bring, break, blow, come, go, put and others) and less commonly used too but also very popular.

A

Account for = explain
Example: They had to account for all the money that had gone

Act on = take action because of something like information received
Example: The police were acting on a tip from an informer and caught the gang red-handed.

Aim at = target
Example: The magazine is aimed at teenagers.

Answer back = reply rudely to someone in authority
Example: Her mother was shocked when she started answering her back and refusing to help.

Ask for = provoke a negative reaction
Example: You’re asking for trouble.

Ask in = invite somebody into your house
Example: Jon’s at the door. Ask him in.

Ask out = invite someone for a date
Example: He wanted to ask her out but was too shy.

B

Back away = retreat or go backward
Example: The crowd backed away when the man pulled a knife.

Back down =retract or withdraw your position or proposal in an argument
Example: She refused to back down and was fired.

Back out = fail to keep an arrangement or promise
Example: He backed out two days before the holiday so we gave the ticket to his sister.

Back up = make a copy of computer data
Example: You should always back up important files and documents so that you won’t lose all your work if something goes wrong with the hardware.

Back up = support
Example: The rest of the staff backed her up when she complained about working conditions.

Barge in = enter a place and interrupt people rudely
Example: They barged into my office without knocking and started talking even though I was on the phone.

Be along = arrive
Example: The next bus should be along in the next quarter of an hour or so.

Be away = be on holiday, etc.
Example: She’s away on business for three weeks.

Be cut up = be upset
Example: She was very cut up about coming second as she thought she deserved to win.

Be down = be depressed
Example: He’s been down since his partner left him.

Be down = be reduced or less
Example: The firm’s profits are down by ten percent this quarter.

Be down with = be ill
Example: Gul is down with some bug and is off work today.

Be in = be at home
Example: They are never in, I always get their answer phone.

Be in = be submitted, arrive
Example: The application form must be in by 3pm on Friday.

Be in on = be involved in
Example: Susan was the only one who wasn’t in on the plan.

Be off = be bad (of food)
Example: This yogurt must be off, it smells foul.

Be off = depart, leave
Example: I’m off home, it’s five o’clock.

Be on = be functioning (of machines)
Example: The computer’s on.

Be on = take place
Example: The show is on for the next three months.

Be out = be absent from a place
Example: She’s out on a visit for the day.

Be out of = have no more left
Example: We’re out of coffee so I’ll have to go and get some.

Be shagged out = be exhausted
Example: We were completely shagged out after we’d carried the suitcases downstairs.

Be snowed under = have too much work
Example: We’re completely snowed under at work because it’s the end of the tax year.

Be taken aback = be shocked or surprised
Example: I was taken aback when I saw him because he’s lost all his hair.

Be up = be out of bed
Example: She’s not up yet.

Be up = have increased or risen
Example: The company’s profits are up by fifteen percent.

Be up = when the time for something finishes or expires
Example: Time’s up, please finish your drinks and leave.

Be up to = be good enough
Example: He’s not up to the job. Get someone else.

Be up to = doing something naughty or wrong
Example: What are those kids up to?

Beat down = strong sunshine
Example: The sun was really beating down and we couldn’t stay outdoors.

Beat up = attack violently
Example: The mugger beat him up and stole his wallet.

Bed down = sleep somewhere less comfortable than normal
Example: We had to bed down on the floor for the night.

Beef up = make something stronger or more solid
Example: The company beefed up their case when they saw that the public wouldn’t accept their first explanation of the accident.

Black out = fall unconscious
Example: He blacked out and collapsed on the floor.

Black out = lose light
Example: Everything blacked out when the power supply failed.

Blank out =censor text so that words cannot be read
Example: The email addresses were blanked out in the documents shown to the court.

Blank out = have a temporary memory failure
Example: I was so nervous in the interview that I just blanked out and couldn’t answer their questions properly.

Blare out = a loud sound or music
Example: The music was blaring out and I couldn’t get to sleep.

Blast off = leave the ground-spaceship or rocket
Example: The space shuttle blasted off on schedule yesterday.

Blaze away = fire a gun repeatedly
Example: The shooters blazed away at the pheasants.

Blow down = when the wind forces something to fall
Example: A tree was blown down in the storm.

Blow out = extinguish etc.
Example: She blew the candles out on her birthday cake.

Blow over = when a scandal gets forgotten
Example: The scandal blew over within a fortnight when the press found someone else to attack.

Blow up = explode
Example: The bomb blew up without any warning.

Bog down =slow make progress
Example: Yasini got bogged down in his research and didn’t finish the project on time.

Boil down to = amount to
Example: It all boils down to money at the end of the day.

Book up = reserve
Example: The flight’s fully booked up. I’ll have to go the following day.

Boot up = Start a computer
Example: He booted up the computer and started work.

Boss about = use excessive authority to control people
Example: She bosses everyone about.

Bottle out =lack courage to do something
Example: She was going to tell her boss exactly what she thought, but bottled out in the end.

Bottle up = not express your feelings
Example: She bottled up her feelings even though she was furious with them and kept quiet.

Bottom out = pass the lowest point and start rising
Example: The recession bottomed out and the economy is recovering well.

Branch out = move into a different area of etc.
Example: The supermarkets have branched out into banking.

Break away = leave an organization, usually to form a new one
Example: The SDP broke away from the Labour Party.

Break down = end negotiations unsuccessfully
Example: The talks between management and the unions broke down acrimoniously.

Break down = start crying
Example: He broke down in tears.

Break down = stop working
Example: My car’s broken down, so I came by taxi.

Break in = go into a building to steal something
Example: The burglars broke in and stole the TV and video.

Break in = interrupt something
Example: I’m sorry to break in on your conversation, but there’s a problem …

Break in = train a horse to be ridden
Example: It took ages to break the horse in.

Break off = break a piece from something
Example: She broke off a square of chocolate and gave it to her dog.

Break off = end a relationship
Example: She broke off their engagement when she found out that he’d been unfaithful.

Break through =pass a barrier or obstacle
Example: The crowd broke through the police barriers and attacked the hunters.

Break up = break into many pieces
Example: The plate broke up when he dropped it on the floor.

Break up = close an educational institution for the holidays
Example: Schools break up at the end of June for the summer holidays.

Break up =finish a relationship
Example: They had been going out for a couple of years before they broke up.

Bring about = make something happen
Example: The changes to the law were brought about by the government because so many people were ignoring the old one.

Bring back = cause someone to remember
Example: Visiting myoId school brought back memories of when I was a pupil there.

Bring back =return
Example: He took the calculator home yesterday and hasn’t brought it back yet.

Bring down = make a government fall
Example: The vote of no-confidence brought the government down.

Bring down = make something cheaper
Example: The improvements in technology have brought the prices of computers down considerably in recent months.

Bring forward = make something happen earlier than originally planned
Example: The meeting has been brought forward to this Friday instead of next week because some people couldn’t make it then.

Bring in = earn
Example: The job brings in two thousand dollars a month.

Bring on = cause something to happen or speed up the process
Example: Getting wet in the rain yesterday brought on my cold.

Bring out = release or publish
Example: The band is bringing out a new CD in the autumn.

Bring out in = cause a health problem or reaction
Example: It was the lobster that brought me out in this rash all over my body.

Bring round =make someone wakes up from unconsciousness or an anaesthetic
Example: The doctors brought him round a few hours after the operation.

Bring up = mention
Example: They didn’t bring the subject up at the meeting.

Bring up = raise a child
Example: My parents brought me up strictly.

Brush up = improve a skill quickly
Example: She took a two-week course to brush up her Spanish before travelling around South and Central America.

Budge up = move to make space for someone
Example: We had to budge up to let the fourth person in the back of the car.

Build up = develop a company
Example: She built the business up from nothing into a market leader in less than a decade.

Build up = increase
Example: Tension has been building up ever since the government passed the unpopular law.

Bump into = meet by chance
Example: I bumped into Helen on the underground the other day.

Bump off = kill
Example: The drug dealer was bumped offby a rival gang.

Bunk off = not go to school when you should
Example: I used to bunk offschool and go into town.

Burn down = burn completely
Example: They had to completely rebuild the museum after the old one burned down.

Burn off = remove by burning or similar process
Example: I burn off a lot of calories in the gym.

Burn out =lose enthusiasm and &ne1lJY to continue in a demanding job
Example: Jennie burnt out after ten years working as a futures broker and went to live in the country.

Burst into = catch fire very quickly
Example: The car burst into flames and the driver died as he didn’t have time to get out.

Burst into = laugh., cry or clap loudly
Example: She burst into laughter when she heard the joke

Butt in = interrupt
Example: I hope you don’t mind me butting in on your conversation, bit I couldn’t help hearing what you said….

Butter up = praise or flatter someone excessively
Example: I tried buttering my tutor up but she still wouldn’t let me hand it in late.

Buy in = force a CD or record into the charts by buying lots of copies
Example: Joe Meek’s last hit, ‘Singin’ the Blues’, was probably bought in at number 40, but failed to go any higher.

Buy out = buy somebody’s share in a company
Example: His business partners bought him out to get rid of him.

C

Call after = name someone after somebody else

Example: She was called Rose after her late grandmother.

Callfor = demand

Example: The Opposition party called for the Minister’s’ resignation after the scandal broke.

Call for = go to collect something

Example: The courier calledfor your parcel, but I told him it wasn’t ready yet.

Call for = telephone for something

Example: I’ll call for a cab right away.

Call for = go and collect someone to take them out

Example: I’ll call for you at seven, so be ready because the film starts at half past.

Callfor = require

Example: An emergency like this calls for some pretty drastic action.

Call in = get someone to come and do a job

Example: We had to call in a plumber because the sink was leaking and I had no idea how to fix it.

Call in = stop and visit

Example: I called in on Jenny on my way home because she’s not very well at the moment and I wanted to see if she needed anything.

Call off = cancel

Example: The concert had to be called off because the singer went down with a bad case of flu.

Call off = order someone to stop attacking

Example: Call offyour lawyers. We can work something out.

Call on = ask for help

Example: The President called on the wealthy countries for financial aid after the floods destroyed much of the country’s agriculture.

Call on = visit

Example: As we were in the area, we called on my sister-in-law.

Call up = summon someone for military service

Example: The army called up the reserve soldiers when the war broke out.

Call up = telephone

Example: I called him up as soon as I got to a phone to tell him the news.

Calm down = stop being angry or emotionally excited

Example: When I lose my temper, it takes ages for me to calm down again.

Carried away = get so emotional that you lose control

Example: The team got earned away when they won the championship that they started shouting and throwing things around.

Carry off = win

Example: She carried offthe first prize in the competition.

Carry on = continue

Example: Carry on quietly with your work until the substitute teacher arrives.

Carry out =perform a task

Example: The government is carrying out test on growing geneti- cally modified crops.

Carry out = food boughtfrom a restaurant to take away

Example: I’m toO tired to cook- let’s get a carry-out.

Catch on = become popular

Example: Many critics were shocked when techno caught on in the clubs.

Catch on = finally understand what isgoing on

Example: Everyone else realised what was happening, but it took Henry ages to catch on.

Catt:h up = get work, etc, ttp to date.

Example: I was ill for a fortnight and now I’ve got to catch up on the work I missed.

Chance upon = fina something by accident

Example: I chanced upon a very rare book in car boot sale and bought it for 65p.

Charge with = accuse somebody ofa crime

Example: She was arrested in customs last night and has been charged with smuggling.

Chase up = ensure that someone remembers to do something

Example: The is chasing me up about my overdue books.

Cheat on = be sexually unfaithful

Example: She cheated on me with my friend.

Check in = register on arriving at a hotel or at the airport

Example: They checked in at the Ritz yesterday.

Check out = pay the bill when leaving a hotel

Example: She checked out and took a cab to the airport.

Check out = die

Example: She checked out last week, the funeral’s tomorrow.

Check out of = settle up and pay before leaving a hotel

Example: Guests have to check out of the hotel before midday.

Cheer up = be less unhappy

Example: Come on, CHEER Up, it isn’t all bad, you know.

Chew over = think about an issue

Example: He asked for a few days to chew the matter over before he made a final decision.

Chicken out =be too afraid to do something

Example: I chickened out of the bungee jumping when I saw how high it was.

Chill out = relax

Example: I’m staying at home and chilling out this evening.

Chuck up = vomit, be sick

Example: He got ridiculously drunk and chucked up in the back of the minicab on the way home.

Clean out = tidy up thoroughly and throwaway unwanted things.

Example: I really must clean the study out, there’s stuff all over the floor and piles of paper everywhere.

Clean up = tidy and clean

Example: Clean this bedroom up, it’s a disgrace.

Clear out = tidy up thoroughly and throwaway unwanted stuff.

Example: I spent the whole weekend clearing out the attic as it was full of papers and other junk.

Clear up = the end ofan infection

Example: I took the antihistamines and the rash cleared up right away.

Clear up = tidy up

Example: I’d better clear away the mess before leave.

Click through = open an advertisement on the Internet

Example: Only a tiny fraction of users ever bother clicking through the banner adverts.

Climb down = accept that you are wrong and change your position

Example: The Prime Minister had to climb down over his tax proposals because there was so much opposition from the members of his own party.

Close down = close a business permanently

Example: The firm closed down during the recession because it couldn’t compete with the cut-price imports pouring in.

Close down = close a shop, branch or business permanently

Example: The banks have closed down a lot of branches in villages over the last few years.

Cloud over = get very cloudy

Example: The morning started bright and warm, but it clouded over around midday and poured with rain.

Come across = find by accident

Example: I came across myoid school reports when I was clearing out my desk.

Come across = agree to have sex with someone

Example: I was surprised when she came across on the first night.

Come across = the way other people see you

Example: He came across as shy because he spoke so quietly.

Come apart = break into pieces

Example: It came apart when I tried to lift it off the floor and I had to glue it back together.

Come before = appear in court chat;!Jed with a crime or offence

Example: He came before the court on charges of speeding.

Comedown =rain

Example: Just look at the rain coming down! I’m not going out in that.

Come down = travel

Example: When you’re next in London, come down and see us.

Come down on = criticise heavily

Example: The management really came down on him for losing the contract.

Come from = country or town where you were born

Example: She comes from Somalia.

Come in = arriveforflights

Example: The plane came in at two-thirty in the morning.

Come in = place or ranking in a competition, etc.

Example: I did my best but came in last but one in the race.

Example: Reports are just coming in of an assassination attempt on the President.

Come into = be important or relevant

Example: Money doesn’t come into it, I simply will not do it under any circumstances.

Come into = inherit

Example: She came into a lot of money when her grandmother died.

Come into use = start being used

Example: The computerised system came into use at the end of last year.

Come off = when something breaks off

Example: I picked it up and the handle came offin my hand.

Come offit = I don’t believe what you’re saying

Example: Come offit, tell me the truth for goodness’ sake.

Come on = encouragement

Example: Come on, don’t give up now when you’re so close to finishing.

Come on = start an illness

Example: I’ve got a bit of a headache. I hope it doesn’t mean I’ve got flu coming on.

Come on =startfunctioning (machines, etc.)

Example: The central heating comes on automatically an hour before I have to get up.

Come out =a secret is revealed

Example: The details of the scandal came out in the press and she had to resign.

Come out = be published or otherwise available to the public

Example: The band’s new CD is coming out in September.

Come out =disappear when washed

Example: The red wine I spilt just will not come out of the carpet no matter what I try to clean it with.

Come out = let people know that you are lesbian orgay

Example: She came out at university and has been living with her partner, Jane, for the last couple of years.

Come out = when the sun appears

Example: It started cloudy, but then the sun came out and we all went to the park.

Come out in = have a rash or similar skin problem

Example: She came out in a nasty rash after touching the poisonous plant by mistake.

Come over = feel strange

Example: I came over all faint and weak because my sugar level was too low. (British)

Come round = become wake up from anaesthetic

Example: She came round and learned that the operation had been a complete success.

Come round = change your opinion

Example: At first she didn’t like the idea, but she came round to our way of thinking in the end.

Come through = arrive (messages and information)

Example: News is coming through of a major accident on the M25, where freezing fog has been making driving conditions extremely dangerous.

Come to = become conscious) wake up from anaesthetic

Example: She came to an hour after the operation.

Come to = result in

Example: The two men started arguing but they soon came to blows and started fighting in earnest.

Come up = appear

Example: I’ll be late home tonight because something’s come up at work has to be ready for tomorrow morning.

Come up = rise (the sun)

Example: The sun came up just as we reached the outskirts of the town.

Come up against = encounter problems or difficulties

Example: They came up against a lot of opposition to their plans for an out-of-town supermarket development.

Come up with = think of a solution, excuse etc.

Example: Nobody could come up with a satisfactory explanation for the accident.

Come upon =find by chance

Example: I came upon the book in a little second-hand bookshop in Dorset.

Conk out = fall fast asleep

Example: I was exhausted and conked out on the sofa.

Cool down =get cooler

Example: I left the tea for a minute until it had cooled down enough to drink.

Cool down = become calm

Example: It took me ages to cool down after the argument.

Cop out = choose an easy alternative

Example: She was going to take a Master’s degree but copped out and chose the Diploma course instead.

Could do with =need or want something

Example: I could really do with a cup of tea.

Count in =include or involve

Example: If you’re going on that skiing holiday, you can count me in, I’d love to go.

Crack down = use more authority than usual

Example: The police always crack down on drink-driving offences over the Christmas period.

Crack up = have a nervous breakdown

Example: He cracked up after his son died and had to take a couple of months off work.

Crack up = have bad on a mobile phone

Example: You’ll have to talk louder, you’re cracking up.

Crash out = sleep at someone’s house because you are too tired, drunk, etc. to leave

Example: Dave crashed out at a friend’s flat after the end-of-term party.

Crop up = appear unexpectedly

Example: I’m going to be late tonight as something has just cropped up at work.

Cross out =put as line through some writing to show it is wrong

Example: She crossed out her mistakes and wrote the correct answers above them.

Cutback =reduce

Example: The firm cut back production because sales were sluggish.

Cut down = consume less

Example: I’m trying to cut down the amount of coffee I drink during the day.

Cut down = shoot

Example: A lot of soldiers were cut down by enemy fire as they stormed the airport.

Cut down on = reduce

Example: Doctors advised her to cut down on the amount of saturated fats in her diet.

Cut it out = stop your unfair or unreasonable behaviour

Example: Will you two idiots cut it out and keep quiet.

Cut off = disconnect

Example: The telephone’s been cut off because we didn’t pay the bill.

Cut off = isolate or make inaccessible

Example: The heavy snow has blocked many roads and cut off a number of villages.

Cut out = exclude

Example: I’m cutting out salt from my diet.

Cut out = when an engine or motor stops

Example: The car cut out at the traffic lights just as they went green.

D

Dawn on = finally realise or understand something

Example: The truth only dawned on me much later.

Die away = become quieter or inaudible (of a sound)

Example: The last notes died away and the audience burst into applause.

Die down = decrease or become quieter

Example: It was on the front pages of all the papers for a few days, but the interest gradually died down.

Die out = become extinct or disappear

Example: Some scientists say that the dinosaurs died out when a comet hit the earth and caused a nuclear winter.

Dig in = start eating greedily

Example: We were starving so we really dug in when the food finally did arrive.

Dig into = reach inside to get something

Example: She dug into her handbag and pulled out a bunch of keys.

Dig up = find something secret

Example: The reporters eventually dug up the truth about the affair.

Do away with = get rid of

Example: The United Kingdom did away with the death penalty in 1965.

Do out of = cheat somebody out ofsomething that is rightfully theirs

Example: They lied on the reference and did me out ofany chance of getting the job.

Do up = close orfasten etc.

Example: You must do up your safety belt in the back of cars and taxis now.

Do up =repair and renovate

Example: It took them six months to do up the house before they could actually move in.

Doze off = fall asleep

Example: The movie was a bit boring and I dozed off halfway through.

Drag on = be unnecessarily long

Example: The meeting dragged on for two and a half hours.

Draw up = prepare a contract

Example: The contract was drawn up by our solicitor.

Draw up = when a vehicle stops

Example: The police car drew up alongside him at the red lights and asked him to pull over.

Dream of =not think or consider

Example: I wouldn’t even dream oftelling her that.

Dream up = invent something, have an idea

Example: They dreamed up the scheme for the improvements and it was accepted by the board.

Dredge up = discover thi11gs about past

Example: The newspapers dredged up the details of his affair with his research assistant.

Dress up = dress very smartly

Example: It’s an informal party so there’s no need to dress up.

Drink up = finish a drink

Example: Drink up, please, it’s closing time.

Drive off= drive awayfrom a place

Example: She slammed the car door shut and drove off withoutsaying a word.

Drop in = visit without having made arrangetnents

Example: I was in the area so I dropped in at the office to see her.

Drop out = quit a course

Example: She dropped out of college and.went straight into a good job.

Dwell on = spend a lot oftime on something

Example: The programme dwelled on little other than the scandal.

Dwell upon = spend a lot oftime on something

Example: She dwelt upon the economic situation in her speech.

E

Ease off = reduce pressure

Example: She eased offthe accelerator to let the car slow down.

Ease up = relax, calm down

Example: She asked her teacher to ease up because she was feeling verv stressed.

Eat out = eat in a restaurant

Example: We couldn’t be bothered to cook so wc atc out last night.

Eat up = eat all ofsomething

Example: If you don’t eat up your greens, you won’t get any dessert.

Edge up = slowly

Example: She ct[rred up behind the bus at the red light.

Egg On = ellcotwage

Example: The other students egged him on when he started arguing with the teacher.

Eke out = make something like lIwney last as long as possible

Example: Most students have to eke out their income because they have so little money to live on.

Embark on = start a project or venture

Example: Piere embarked on an MBA at Instead last autumn.

Embark upon = start a project or venture

Example: Fernando has just embarked upon a completely new di- rection professionally.

End up = become or do something unplanned

Example: We couldn’t get tickets for Egypt so we ended up going to Turkey instead.

Enter for = join or enter a competition

Example: They entered for the national championship but weren’t good enough.

Eye up = look carefully at someone

Example: The guy eyed the other man up because he was behaving suspiciously.

F

Face up to = accept an unpleasant truth

Example: Many people find it hard to face up to the fact tlUt they are getting old.

Fall back = retreat

Example: The army fell back after losing the battle.

Fall down = fall on theground

Example: I slipped on the ice andfell down.

Fall down = have a weak point

Example: The argument falls down when you look at how much it’ll cost.

Fall for = be attracted to somebody, fall in love

Example: He fell for her the moment their eyes met.

Fall for = believe a lie or a piece ofdeception

Example: He fell for my story and allowed me yet another exten- sion for the submission of my thesis.

Fall in = collapse

Example: The ceiling fell in hurting a lot of people.

Fall off = decrease

Example: The membership fell off dramatically when the chair-person resigned.

Fall out = argue and be on bad terms with someone

Example: Theyfell out over the decision and hardly speak to each other any more.

Fall out = lose hair

Example: He’s started getting worried about baldness because his hair is falling out rather quickly.

Fall over = fall on theground

Example: I slipped on the ice andfell over.

Fall through = be unsuccessful

Example: The plans fell through when planning permission was refused.

Fathom out = understand something

Example: I couldn’t fathom out what she wanted from me. (British)

Feel up to =feel capable ofdoing something

Example: I’m so tired. I don’t think. I feel up to going out tonight.

Fight off =fight an attacker and force them back

Example: The old lady managed to fight the muggers offand they didn’t get her purse.

Figure out = find the answer to a problem

Example: The police couldn’t figure out how the burglars had got into the warehouse.

File away = put a docu’I1’lent in the correct place for storage in a filing system

Example: I filed a copy of the letter away for my records.

Fill in = complete a form (UK)

Example: I filled in the application form and posted it off.

Fill in on = give someone information

Example: I’m sorry I missed the meeting, could you fill me in on what happened.

Fill out = complete a fimn (US)

Example: I filled out the application form and mailed it.

Fill up = fill something completely

Example: I stopped at the garage and filled up with petrol.

Filter out = remove something unwanted

Example: Itfilters out all the impurities and chemicals in tap water so that it tastes better.

Find out = discover

Example: I went to the library to find out all I could about the life and work of Joe Meek.

Finish off = finish completely

Example: Theyfinished offall the chocolates and had to go to the all-night garage to buy some more.

Fire away = ask questions

Example: What do you want to know? fire away and I’ll tell you.

Fire up = Start a computer

Example: Shefired up the computer and printed out a hard copy of the files.

Fit in =get on in a group of people

Example: I didn’t fit in with the other people working there so I left and found another job.

Fit in = have enough time or space for something

Example: I didn’t have time to fit in another appointment.

Fix up = make an arrangement

Example: He fixed up an appointment for me to see a specialist.

Flesh out =add more details or information

Example: The recent government report fleshed out the draft proposals.

Flog off = sell something cheaply toget rid ofit

Example: The council flogged off the land cheaply to a developer who had close links to a few of the councillors. (British)

Focus on = concentrate

Example: The report focuses on the company’s weak points.

Fold up = make a sheet ofpaper smaller

Example: Darren folded up the letter and put it in an envelope.

G

Geek out = talk at length about computing

Example: Henry always geeks out at parties and bores all the non- specialists, nearly everyone within earshot, to death.

Get around = become known

Example: It didn’t take long for the news toget around once it got into the newspapers.

Get around to = finally manage to do smnething

Example: It always takes me ages to get around to replying to letters.

Get at = criticise

Example: His boss is always getting at him for arriving late.

Get at = mean

Example: What do you think she’sgetting I’ve no idea what she wants.

Get away = escape

Example: The robbers got away in a stolen car, which the police later found abandoned.

Get away = go on holiday orfor a short break

Example: We love to get away from everything and relax in the country.

Get away with = notget caught doing smnething wrong

Example: Thieves got away with two Picassos, which were never found.

Get back = return

Example: The train was held up so we didn’tget back home until midnight.

Get behind with = be late paying instalnumts for smnething.

Example: If you get behind with mongage payments, you might lose your home.

Get by = have just enough money to live on

Example: They’re finding it increasingly difficult to get by since their daughter was born.

Get down = depress someone

Example: The miserable weather in winter reallygets me down.

Get down to = start work ‘

Example: I find it extremely difficult toget down to doing any revision for examinations.

Get in = arrangefor someone to do a job

Example: The air conditioning has broken down, we’ll have toget a technician in to fix it.

Get in = arrive (train, plane etc.)

Example: Her planegets in at 2am our time.

Get in = arrive home

Example: She didn’tget in till twelve o’clock because she’d been out for a few drinks with her mates.

Get in = enter a car or taxi

Example: The taxi pulled up and wegot in.

Get off = escape punishment

Example: He got off on a technicality and left the court as a free man.

Get off =leave a bus” train” etc.

EXample: Wegot offthe bus and walked to my house.

Get offwith = have casual sex with

Example: He got offwith her at the party.

Get on = continue doing something

Example: The teacher asked the pupils to get on with some work quietly as she had to leave the classroom.

Get on = enter a bus” train” plane” etc.

Example: Wegot on the train at Plymouth and went up to London.

Get on = make progress

Example: How are yougetting on with your Spanish lessons?

Get on well = have a good relationship

Example: Fortunatel); I get on well with my boss.

Get out of = avoid doing something you dislike

Example: I said I wasn’t feeling well andgot out ofthe extra work.

Get out of = leave a car, van, etc.

Example: We got out of the taxi and paid the driver.

Get over = recover

Example: It took me ages toget over the bout of flu.

Get over with = do something unpleasant rather than delaying it any more

Example: I got the test over with rather than have to worry about it any longer.

Get round\around = persuade someone

Example: She didn’t want to let me do it, but I succeeded ingetting round her. (In American English ‘around’ is used)

Get round\around to =finally manage to do something

Example: It always takes me ages toget round to writing letters. (In American English ‘around’ is used)

Get through = contact

Example: I tried calling her mobile phone, but I couldn’tget through.

Get to = annoy, irritate

Example: Don’t let herget to you, she’s just in a bad mood.

Get together = meet socially

Example: Wegot together in the pub for a drink.

Get up = get out ofbed

Example: Iget up at seven o’clock on weekdays, but lie in till noon at the weekend.

Get up = organise

Example: Theygot up a list of two hundred people who were opposed to the local council’s plans.

Get up to = do something wrong or naughty

Example: The children are always getting up to some trouble or other.

Give away = entrust your daughter to her husband during the marnage ceremony

Example: Hegave his daughter away and told the groom to lOOK after her.

Give away = tell a secret

Example: She didn’tgive anything away about the party so it came as a complete surprise to me.

Give back = return something you-‘ve borrowed

Example: Igave her back the twenty pounds she’d lent to me.

Give in = stop doing something because it’s too hard or requires too much energy

Example: I couldn’t fInish the crossword puzzle and had togive in and look at the answers.

Give in = submit homework., etc.

Example: The projects have to begiven in three weeks before we break up for the end of term. (British)

Give off = emit pollution or something else unpleasant

Example: The police stopped the van because it was giving off a lot of black smoke.

Give out = distribute

Example: Somebody was giving leaflets out in front of the underground station.

Give out = stop working

Example: I’d been having trouble with my laptop and it finally gave out at the weekend.

Give up = stop doing something that had been a habit

Example: I gave up taking sugar in tea and coffee to lose weight.

Give up on = lose faith in or stop believing in something or someone

Example: I gave up on them when I heard what they were saying about me behind my back.

Gloss over = try to minimise the importance ofsomething

Example: The Minister tried to gloss over the report that was critical of her department.

Go about = deal with something

Example: How should Igo about telling her the bad news?

Go after = chase, try to get

Example: The bird went after the pigeon, but it flew away.

Go against = lose a decision or a verdict ofa court

Example: If the decisiongoes against me, I’ll go bankrupt.

Go ahead = proceed

Example: The construction of the bypass went ahead despite the protests from environmentalists.

Go along with = accept a decision or suggestion

Example: I didn’t really agree but went along with the decision because I was in the minority.

Go by = the pass in oftime

Example: Ten years went by before we saw each other again.

Go by =trust or depend on for correct information

Example: Don’tgo by watch, it’s usually a bit slow.

Go down = decrease, get smaller

Example: The price of scanners has gone down recently.

Go down = sink

Example: The Titanic went down after it hit an iceberg on its maiden voyage.

Go down = sunset

Example: The sun went down at seven o’clock.

Go down with = fall ill

Example: She went down with a virus. (British- Americans use ‘come down with’)

Gofor = attack

Example: The neighbour’S dog wentfor the postman and bit him.

Go for =be attracted to

Example: She tends to go for guys like him.

Go for = choose, select

Example: I’llgo for the soup of the day, followed by the duck.

Go in = go to hospital for treatment, surgery, etc.

Example: He went in for a triple bypass operation two days ago.

Go in for = enter a competition

Example: She went into banking after she’d finished university.

Go off = explode (bomb), start ringing (alarm)

Example: The fire alarm went off because someone was smoking in the toilets.

Go off = go bad

Example: The milk went offbccause I forgot to put it in the fridge.

Go off = start to dislike

Example: I went off her when she lied to me. (British)

Go on = continue

Example: He went on and on talking and I was so bored.

Go on = happen

Example: There are loads of people out in the street, what’s going on?

Go on about = talk too much

Example: He’s always going on about his kids.

Go out = stops burning

Example: The candle went out and left us in darkness.

Go out with = have a relationship with

Example: He’s been going out with his girlfriend for around six months now.

Go through = experience

Example: He went in for the photography prize, but didn’t win.

Go into = discuss in some detail

Example: They refused to go into exactly what was wrong

Go into = enter a profession

Example: You wouldn’t believe what I went through when I was ill!

Go through = read again

Example: I went through my notes before the exam.

Go through with = do or complete sotnething you’ve agreed to

Example: He did promise, but I doubt that he’llgo through with it.

Go under = go bankrupt

Example: Many small shops are going under because they cannot compete with the supermarkets.

Go up = rise

Example: The price of petrol has gone up sharply because of the

increase in duty in the Government’s budget.

Go up to = approach

Example: She went up to him and asked him if he wanted a drink.

Go with = combine nicely

Example: Does this tie go with my shin?

Go without = not have

Example: I had to go without lunch today because I didn’t have any time.

Grass up = report someone to a person in authority

Example: She didn’t to grass them up, even though they’d been bullying her badly. (British)

Grow into = grow to fit large clothes

Example: The jacket’s a bit big, but she’ll grow into it.

Grow out of = grow too large for clothes

Example: Hegrew out ofthose shoes in no time at all.

Grow up = mature, becotne adult

Example: Hegrew up in the West Country.

H

Hand down = pass on to the nextgeneration

Example: The jewellery has been handed down in my family for generations.

Hand in = submit work for appraisal

Example: I handed my homework in late as usual.

Hand out = distribute

Example: The teacher handed out the worksheet to the class.

Hand over = give

Example: The robbers told the clerk to hand over all the money.

Hang on = wait

Example: Could you hang on for a moment till she’s free.

Hang out = spend time socially

Example: He hangs out in the pub The Monarch, he’s there most of the nights.

Hang up = end a phone call

Example: I lost my temper and hung up on her.

Harp on = talk repeatedly about something

Example: I was late twice last week and my boss keeps harping on about it.

Have on = be wearing

Example: What did Joan have on at the party?

Heat up = makefood hot

Example: He heated the soup up in the microwave.

Help out = give assistance

Example: She really helped me out when I was going through my divorce.

Hit on = have an idea

Example: I suddenly hit on the solution

Hold back = not show etnotion

Example: It was really hard to hold back the tears.

Hold down = keep a job

Example: He’s so unreliable that he can never hold down a job for more than a couple of months.

Hold off = when bad weather doesn’t appear

Example: The rain held offuntil we’d got back home.

Hold on = wait

Example: Could you hold on for a minute, she’ll be free in a moment.

Hold up = delay when travelling

Example: I was held up by the terrible traffic and arrived half an hour late for my appointment.

Hold up = rob with violence or threats thereof

Example: Two armed men held up the bank in High Street this morning and got away with £75,000.

Home in on = target

Example: The government is homing in on benefit fraud.

I

Iron out = remove small problems or irregularities

Example: The management team ironed out the tax problems before they gave the project the OK.

J

Jam on = apply or operate something forcefully

Example: Jack jammed on the brakes when the rabbit ran in front of his car.

Jazz up = make something more interesting or attractive

Example: The show was getting stale so they jazzed it up with some new scenes.

Jot down =make a quick note

Example: I jotted down her number on a scrap of paper and I can’t find it now.

K

Keep at = continue with som.ething difficult

Example: She found the course hard but she kept at it and completed it successfully.

Keep off = not talk about

Example: She kept offthe subject of her divorce.

Keep on = continue

Example: He kept on trying and succeeded in the end.

Keep up = not let someone go to bed

Example: My neighbours kept me up till after 4 am with their loud music last night.

Keep up at = continue, not quit

Example: Learning a language is difficult, but if you keep up at it, you’ll succeed in the end.

Keep up with = move at the same rate

Example: He walks too fast and it’s really hard to keep up with him.

Keep up with = stay up to date

Example: It’s hard to keep up with all the latest improvements and breakthroughs in technology nowadays.

Key in =enter numbers or information into a computer or electronic system

Example: It took me ages to key in all the information into the database.

Kick in =when a drug starts to take effect

Example: Her hay fever didn’t feel half as bad once the antihistamines had kicked in.

Kick off= startagame offootball

Example: The match kicks offat three o’clock.

Kick out = expel

Example: The family kicked the au pair out when they found out that she was planning to move to work for another household.

Knock down =demolish

Example: They knocked down the old church and built a block of flats in its place.

Knock down =hit and injure someone

Example: The car knocked her down and she broke her arm.

Knock off =finish workfor the day

Example: We knocked offearly on Friday to avoid the rush hour queues.

Knock out = hit and make somebody unconscious

Example: The reigning middleweight champion knocked out the challenger in the fourth round of the fight.

L

Large it up = have a good time when intoxicated

Example: They were larging it up in the rave.

Lay down = establish rules or procedures

Example: The rules of the sport were laid down early in the nineteenth century.

Layoff = make an employee redundant

Example: The hotel laid off twenty staff because tourist numbers were down.

Lay on = supply

Example: They laid on a buffet lunch at the conference.

Layout = spend money

Example: They laid out thousands of pounds on their wedding reception.

Lead to = result in

Example: The investigation led to the arrest of a number of suspects.

Leave on = not turn off

Example: Leave the TV on, I want to hear the football results.

Leave out = not include

Example: He was left out of the side because he hasn’t been play- ing too well lately.

Let down = disappoint, foil to keep an arrangement

Example: She failed to turn up and I felt badly let down.

Let in = allow someone to enter

Example: The door staff didn’t let him in the nightclub because he was wearmg Jeans.

Let off = not punish

Example: The judge let him off with a fme rather than a prison sentence since it was his first offence.

Let on = tell a secret

Example: I didn’t mean to let on about the party, I just said it without thinking.

Let out = allow to leave orgo out

Example: The convict was let out of prison after serving five years of an eight year sentence.

Let out = make a sound

Example: He let out a huge sigh of relief when he heard the results.

Lift off = leave the ground-rocket or spaceship

Example: 5-4-3-2-1- we have lift-off!

Light up = light or start smoking a cigarette

Example: Asif lit up as soon as he got out of the building.

Listen outfor = listen for a particular noise or sound

Example: They put their coats on and listened outfor the minicab.

Live it up = have a good time by spending a lot of money

Example: She’s been living it up like crazy since she won the lottery.

Live off = use money earned

Example: They find it hard to live offthe money they make.

Live on = use money for basic necessities

Example: They have to live on $200 a week.

Lock up = close all doors, windows, etc.

Example: She locked up after everyone had left and went home.

Log off = exit a computer system

Example: When she’d finished working on the spreadsheet, she logged offand left the office.

Log on = enter a computiir system

Example: He entered his password for the college intranet and logged on.

Log out = exit a computer system

Example: Danny closed the programs and logged out when it was time to go home.

Look after = take care

Example: Their auntie looked after them while their mother was in hospital.

Look back = think about the past

Example: Old people often look back on over their lives.

Look down on = have a low opinion of

Example: He looks down on his colleagues because he thinks he’s better than they are.

Look For = try to find

Example: I’ve been lookingfor all their hidden flies, but I can’t find them anywhere.

Look forward to = wait for or anticipate smnething pleasant

Example: I’m looking forward to meeting you.

Look in = Make a quick visit

Example: I’ll look in on them on my way home.

Look in on = visit briefly to see ifeverything’s all right

Example: I’m going to look in on Gran on the way home tonight as she’s been a bit unwell recently.

Look into = investigate

Example: We’ll look into the problem and come back to you when we have the information.

Look on = watch something like a crime without helping

Example: The crowd just looked on as the old lady was mugged.

Look out = be careful

Example: Look out, you’re going to drop that!

Look round = inspect a house

Example: We looked round the house and decided that we didn’t like it enough to buy it.

Look up = consult a reference work phonebook, etc. for a specific piece ofinformation.

Example: I didn’t know the correct spelling so I had to look it up in the dictionary.

Look up to = respect

Example: She’s looks up to her mother.

M

Make for = head in a certain direction

Example: We made for home when it started raining.

Make into =change something into something else

Example: Many churches have been made into flats in recent years.

Make it up to = try to compensate for doing something wrong

Example: He tried to make it up to her, but she wouldn’t speak to him.

Make offwith =steal

Example: Thieves made offwith over a million dollars in the robbery.

Make out = make a cheque payable to sumebody

Example: Please make the cheque out to RGM Productions Ltd.

Make out = pretend

Example: He made out that he was ill so that he didn’t have to go to school.

Make up = stop being angry with smneone

Example: They are always arguing, but they make up again very quickly.

Make up for = compensate

Example: I sent her a present to try to make up for my appalling behaviour.

Mark down = give a student a lowergradefor a particular reason

Example: Students who gave obviously rehearsed answers were marked down, while those who spoke naturally were rewarded accordingly.

Meet wiph = have something happen to you

They met with some problems they hadn’t anticipated.

Mix up = confuse

Example: I always mix those two sisters up because they look so like each other.

Mouth off = speak angrtly about something

Example: I always get angry and start mouthing offwhen the news is on TV.

Move on = change the subject or your job

Example: She moved on to another company where the salary was considerably better.

Move on = make people nwve from a place

Example: The police moved the crowd on because they were holding up the traffic.

Mullover =think about an issue or problem

Example: She said that she’d had to mull it over before deciding what was

N

Nag at = repeatedly criticise someone verbally

Example: My boss is always nagging at me about my arriving a few minutes late for work.

Note down = write something short like a phone number for future reference.

Example: She noted down my fax number so that she could send me the documents when she got to the office.

O

Open up = start to talk freely about something

Example: She hates to open up and discuss her feelings.

Optfor = choose

Example: I opted for an endowment mortgage and lost a lot of money.

Opt out = choose not to be part of something

Example: The UK opted out of a lot of EU legislation on working hours and conditions.

Owe to = be the reason for something

Example: She owes her success to hard work and determination.

Own up = confess

Example: Nobody owned up to breaking the window.

P

Pan out = the way a situation develops

Example: I don’t know how things willpan out now the company’s been taken over.

Pass away = die

Example: Sadly, Georgia’s uncle passed away yesterday after a short illness.

Pass on = give a message to someone

Example: I’ll pass the message on when she gets here.

Pass out = faint, lose consciousness

Example: He got so drunk that he passed out.

Pay back = repay money borrowed

Example: I paid baclz the twenty pounds I’d borrowed.

Pay back = take revenge on

Example: I’m going to pay him back for that insult.

Pay for = purchase

Example: I paid twenty pounds for the book.

Pay into = deposit money

Example: I paid the cash into my account.

Payoff = completely repay a debt

Example: The mortgage will be paid off in twenty-five years.

Payoff = produce a profitable or successful result

Example: Their patience paid off when he finally showed up and signed the contract.

Perk up = feel better or happier

Example: She was ill in bed with flu, but she perked up a bit when some friends dropped by.

Pick at = eat unwillingly

Example: I wasn’t very hungry so I just picked at my food.

Pick out = choose or select

Example: She picked out the ones she wanted to take and left the rest.

Example: The victim couldn’t pick out her attacker from the photos the police showed her.

Pick up =improve

Example: Sales picked up a bit during the Christmas period.

Pick up = learn quickly

Example: She picked up Spanish in six months.

Pile up = accumulate

Example: Work just keeps on piling up and I really can’t manage to get it all done.

Pipe down =be quiet (often as an imperative)

Example: The lecturer asked the students to pipe down and pay attention.

Play down = try to tnake something seem less important

Example: The Government has tried to play down the importance of the minister’s resignation.

Plug in =connect tnachines to the electricity supply

Example: He plugged the TV in and turned it on full blast.

Plumpfor = choose

Example: I plumped for the steak frites.

Point out = make someone aware ofsomething

Example: He pointed out that I only had two weeks to get the whole thing finished.

Polish off= finish

Example: She polishes off half a bottle of neat spirits every night.

Pop out =go outfor a short time

Example: I’m just popping out to the shops. Do you need anything while I’m out?

Pop up = appear, like windows and boxes opening on a computer screen.

Example: The dialogue box popped up when I pressed Enter.

Pour down = rain hard

Example: It poured down all day so we had to remain indoors.

Prattle on = talk too much

Example: Geoff just prattled on rather than give a straight answer.

Price up = charge more for something

Example: In rural areas where they have a monopoly, some garages price up fuel because there’s nowhere else to buy it.

Print out = make a hard copy ofa computer document

Example: He printed out the letter and checked through it carefully.

Pull away = when a vehicle moves from a place

Example: The car pulled away from the lights at high speed.

Pull in = when a train arrives at a station

Example: The train pulled in and we rushed to meet her as she got off.

Pull off = manage to do something difficult or tricky

Example: No-one thought that she would be able to do it, but she pulled it offin the end.

Pull up = slow and stop a car

Example: The cab pulled up outside my house and I got out.

Push in = get in a queue without waiting

Example: She just pushed in the queue in front of me at the supermarket checkout.

Put away = put something back in the correct place

Example: He put the dictionary back on the shelf after he’d finished the crossword.

Put back = rearrange something for a later time

Example: The AGM has been put back until July the seventeenth.

Putby = savefor thefuture

Example: I try to put some money by every month towards our summer holiday.

Put down = kill an animal because it’s etc.

Example: He had his dog put down because it was in a lot of pain from its tumours.

Put in = install

Example: They had to put in a whole new central heating system because the house was so cold.

Putinfor =makea request

Example: He put in for a transfer to the new branch.

Put off = postpone

Example: The concert’s been put offuntil next month because the singer’s got a throat infection.

Put off = stop liking something or somebody

Example: I was really put off by the way he eats with his mouth open.

Put on = getfat

Example: He’s put on a lot of weight since he gave up smoking.

Put out = broadcast

Example: Several charities put out an appeal on TV for money for the victims of the flooding in Mozambique.

Put out = disturb or trouble someone

Example: Would it be putting you out greatly if I asked to change to another day.

Put out = extinguish a cigarette, fire, etc.

Example: He put out his cigarette before entering the building.

Put through = connect someone by phone

Example: Could you put me through to extension 259 please.

Put towards = make a financial contribution

Example: She put $250 towards the cost of the repairs and we had to pay the rest.

Put up = allow someone to stay at your house for a night or a few days.

Example: She put me up for the night because I’d missed the last bus and there were no night buses running.

Put up = increase prices, taxes, duties, etc.

Example: The government has put tuition fees for undergraduate students up again.

Put up with = tolerate

Example: I can’t put up with my neighbour’s noise any longer, it’s driving me mad.

Q

Quieten down = fall silent

Example: The audience quietened down when the lights were switched off in the auditorium and the play was ready to begin.

R

Rat on = inform authorities about someone’s wrongdoings

Example: She ratted to the police on her neighbours because they were smuggling alcohol from France.

Rattle off = quote figures rapidly

Example: She rattled offload of statistics which nobody could understand.

Read off = read a list aloud for someone to write down

Example: I read offthe figures and she wrote them down in her

notebook.

Read out = read aloud rather than silently

Example: The teacher read out the names of the students who’d passed.

Reckon on = the minimum expected

Example: Jeff says we can reckon on there being at least fifty people there tonight.

Ring back = return a phone call

Example: I phoned and left a message this morning but she still hasn’t called me back.

Ring off = finish a phone conversation

Example: Dave rang offguiltily when he saw his boss coming.

Ring up = telephone

Example: Helen rang up earlier.

Rip off =charge excessively or obtain money unfairly

Example: Tourists get ripped offa lot when they don’t speak the language.

Round off =finish something in a satisfactory manner

Example: Winning the FA Cup rounded offa wonderful season for Arsenal.

Rule out = exclude

Example: The Government quickly ruled out the possibility of a relaxation of the law.

Run away = Escape from people chasing you

Example: He ran away from his attackers.

Run down = hit a pedestrian with a vehicle

Example: The minicab ran him down on the zebra crossing.

Run down = lose energy or power

Example: You should only recharge the battery when it has fully run dawn.

Run into = cost

Example: The project has run into millions of dollars without any prospect of a return on this investment.

Run into = meet by accident

Example: I ran into James in a bar in the City on Friday.

Run off = make photocopies

Example: Could you run off two hundred copies of this report, please.

Run on = bepowered by

Example: The van runs on diesel.

Runoutof= havenoneleft

Example: We’ve run out ofsugar, I’m going to the shops for some.

Run over =explain quickly

Example: Could you run over that point again, I’m afraid I didn’t quite understand it.

Run over = hit with a vehicle

Example: The driver couldn’t stop in time and ran the fox over when it ran in front of his car.

Run through =practise a dramatic work like a play quickly

Example: The cast ran through the play the day before it opened to the public.

Run through = stab or wound deeply with a etc.

Example: The musketeer ran his enemy through with a sword and killed him.

S

Save up = for money for a particular purpose

Example: He’s saving up to buy a car.

Scare off = make someone so frightened that he or she away

Example: The vicious Doberman guard-dog scared the burglars away.

Screw up =do badly orfail

Example: David screwed up his oral exam but still managed to scrape a pass.

Screw up =make a ruin

Example: He screwed up the whole project and lost his job.

See into =accompany someone into an office

Example: Her secretary saw me into her office.

See off = chase s01nebody or sO’l’nCthing away

Example: A cat came into the back garden but the dog soon saw it off.

See off = go to the airport, to saygoodbye to someone

Example: I went to the station to see them off.

See out = accompany a guest to your front door when they are leaving your house

Example: They had a lot of difficulties in implementing the project, but the team saw it through successfully.

See through = realise someone is lying or being deceitful

Example: The police quickly saw through her disguise and arrested her.

See to = deal with something

Example: He saw to the arrangements and everything ran smoothly and efficiently.

Sell out = have no more ofsomething left because it has been bought

Example: The tickets for the Primal Scream concert at the Brixton Academy sold out in a couple of hours.

Sell out = lose all artistic integrity in return for commercial success

Example: Most bands sell out when they sign to a major record label and forget all their principles when pursuing chart success.

Sell out = sell all available tickets

Example: The concert completely sold out months in advance.

Send back = return something

Example: I sent my food back because it was overcooked.

Send for = ask someone to come and help

Example: I had to send for a plumber because the radiator was leaking.

Send in = order people into a place to handle a problem

Example: Are you sure you’re going? I’ll get your coats and see you out.

See through = continue with something to the end

Example: The police were sent in to quell the riot as the protesters had started burning cars and wrecking shops.

Send in = write to get information

Example: If you want to enter the competition, you have to send in for an entry form.

Send off = expel a sports player from a match

Example: The football striker was sent off for arguing with the referee’s decision.

Send off = post a letter

Example: I must send this letter off today otherwise it won’t get there in time.

Send offfor = order something by post

Example: I sent offfor some jeans that I liked in the catalogue.

Send out = send something to a lot of people

Example: They sent out a mail shot to all their existing customers.

Send out for = order takeaway food by phone

Example: We couldn’t be bothered to cook, so we sent out for a pizza.

Set about = start doing something

Example: We set about the cleaning and got it done before lunch time.

Set aside = overturn a court verdict or decision

Example: The Appeal Court set aside the guilty verdict because the evidence was unsatisfactory and declared her not guilty.

Set back = cost

Example: The car repairs set me back eight hundred pounds.

Set in = change season noticeably

Example: Winter has set in, it’s started snowing.

Set off = explode a bomb

Example: Terrorists set off a car bomb in the city centre last night. Fortunately, no one was hurt or killed.

Set off = ring an alarm

Example: The smoke set the fire alarm off.

Set off = start a journey

Example: We set off for work at seven-thirty.

Set out = display, show

Example: The figures are set out in the council’s annual report.

Set out = start a journey

Example: The explorers set out for the South Pole yesterday morning.

Set up = prepare equipment, software, etc., for use

Example: The technician set up the computer network perfectly.

Set up = start a company

Example: They set up a dot com company and floated it a couple of years later on the Stock Exchange and made an absolute fortune.

Settle down = start living a fixed and routine life

Example: After years of partying and drinking, she finally got married and settled down.

Settle in = get used to

Example: It took him a while to fettle in when he moved to Japan.

Settle on = agree

Example: They couldn’t agree at first on a name for their daugh- ter, but fmally settled on Alice.

Sex up = change information to make it more attractive to the reader\listener

Example: The government denied that they had sexed up the report to make the front page.

Shake off = get rid ofan illness

Example: It took me ages to shake offthe cough.

Shoot off = leave promptly and quickly

Example: I’ll have to shoot offas soon as the lesson ftnishes, otherwise I’ll miss my train.

Shoot up = increase quickly

Example: The share prices of internet companies have been shooting up lately.

Shop around = look around for the best price, quality, etc.

Example: If you shop around, you can fmd some real bargains for air tickets.

Show in = take someone into an office

Example: The secretary showed me in to speak to the manager.

Show off = behave in a way so as to attract attention

Example: The children were showing offand irritated me.

Shut down = close a business, shop, etc.

Example: The shop shut down when the out-of-town supermarket opened.

Shut down = turn a computer off

Example: You should close all programs before you shut a computer down.

Side with = support someone

Example: The lecturer sided with her students and got sacked for.

Sift through = examine a lot ofthings carefully

Example: We had to sift through thousands of files before we found what we were looking for.

Sink in = slowly come to be understood

Example: The truth fmally sank in about her death when it was broadcast on Tv.

Sit around = sit idly, doing nothing

Example: They just sat around while the others did all the work.

Sit in = occupy a building to protest about something

Example: The students sat in the Library as a protest against the increase in tuition fees.

Sit on = be on a cmnmittee

Example: She’s sat on the fmance committee from the beginning.

Sit throueh = stay till the end ofsomething dull

Example: I was bored and wanted to leave halfway through, but we sat through the film.

Slag off = criticise heavily

Example: The concert was terrible and all the papers slagged the band off.

Sleep off = sleep in order to recoverfrom excess alcohol, druos, etc.

Example: She went to bed to sleep off the effects of the tequila.

Sleep on = think about something

Example: My boss said she’d have to sleep on it when I asked her for a raise.

Sleep over = spend the night at someone else’s house

Example: The au pair made tea for the friends who were sleeping over.

Sleep through = not wake up

Example: I slept through the storm even though the wind blew some slates off the roof.

Slip out = leave discreetly

Example: The party was really dull so we slipped out and went to the pub instead.

Slip up =make an error

Example: The waitress slipped up and didn’t bring us what we had ordered.

Sober up = stop showing the effects ofalcohol or drugs

Example: Keith sobered up a bit when we left the pub and walked home.

Soldier on =continue even when thingsget difficult

Example: Life got hard for my dog when he went blind, but he just soldiered on and never complained.

Sort out = resolve a problem

Example: Has the firm sorted out its tax problems yet?

Sort out = solve a problem

Example: There were a lot of problems at first, but they’ve all been sorted out now.

Sound out = check what someone thinks about an etc.

Example: You should sound her out to get her opinion before you go ahead with the plan.

Spark off =cause usually unpleasan; to happen

Example: The riot was sparked offby the police raid on the club.

Speak out = talk openly and freely

Example: People are afraid to speak out in oppressive political regimes.

Speak up = Talk more loudly

Example: They couldn’t hear the speaker and asked him to speak up a bit.

Split up = divide into groups

Example: The teacher split the class up into groups of four.

Sptit up =finish a relationship

Example: They are always splitting up and then getting back to- gether again.

Spur on = encourage someone to continue

Example: The thought of the bonus spurred her on to complete the work on time.

Squeeze up = get more people into a space than normal or comfortable

Example: Four of us had to squeeze up in the back of the car.

Stand by = support someone

Example: He stood by her throughout the trial as he believed her to be innocent.

Stand for = accept or tolerate behaviour

Example: I’m not going to stand for their rudeness any longer.

Stand for = the words represented by certain initials

Example: ‘WHA T do the letters BBC stand for? ‘ ‘British Broad-casting Corporation.’

Stand in for = substitute someone temporarily

Example: She had to stand in for the editor while he was on holiday.

Stand out = be extraordinary and different

Example: She stood out from the crowd in selection and was offered the job.

Start up = open a business

Example: The firm started up on a shoestring budget.

Stay in = not go out

Example: I’m going to stay in and chill tonight, I can’t be bothered to go out.

Stay on = remain longer than anticipated

Example: She stayed on after she graduated to do a Master’s degree.

Stay out = notgo home

Example: We stayed out all night.

Stay up =notgo to bed

Example: The children stayed up until way past their bedtime.

Steer clear of = avoid

Example: He’s trying to steer clear ofhis lecturer because he hasn’t finished his assignment yet.

Step in = get involved by interrupting something

Example: I had to step in when they started fighting.

Step up = increase

Example: The police have stepped up the pressure on beggars work- ing the Underground.

Stick to = not change

Example: The Prime Minister decided to stick to the original plan despite the criticism in the media.

Stir up = make trouble for someone else

Example: He stirred things up by complaining to senior management about his line manager.

Stop off = break a journey

Example: We stopped offfor lunch about halfway there, then carried on driving.

Stub out =extinguish a cigarette

Example: He stubbed his cigarette out in a saucer because he couldn’t fmd an ashtray.

Sum up = summarise

Example: At the end of the lecture, she summed up the main points again.

Summon up = get the energy or courage to do something

Example: Andrea couldn’t summon up the enthusiasm to apply for the position.

Suss out = come to understand

Example: It took her ages to suss out what was going on.

T

Take after = look like, resemble

Example: He takes after his mother.

Take apart = take something to pieces

Example: She took the photocopier apart to see what had got stuck in it.

Take aside = get someone alone to talk to them

Example: The teacher took her aside and said that she’d failed the exam.

Take back = make someone nostalgic

Example: That song always takes me back to when I was at university.

Take back =retract a admit that something was wrong

Example: I had to take back everything bad I’d said about them when I learned how they’d helped out.

Take down = make notes or write down in full

Example: The police took down his answers to their questions.

Take down = remove

Example: People take down their Christmas decorations twelve days after Christmas.

Take in = absorb information

Example: The lecture was rather boring and I didn’t take in much of what the lecturer said.

Take in = deceive

Example: Nobody was taken in by her unbelievable excuse.

Take in = make clothes smaller

Example: The jacket was far too big around the shoulders, so I had it taken in so that I could wear it.

Take it out on = abuse someone because you’re angry

Example: Whenever things go wrong, he always shouts and takes it out on me, even if I had nothing to do with the problem.

Take off = makegreat progress

Example: The software house really took offwhen they produced the latest version of their DTP package.

Take off = reduce the price ofan item

Example: They’ve taken ten percent offdesigner frames for glasses.

Take off = when a plane departs or leaves the ground

Example: The flight for Dublin took offon time.

Take on = allow passengers on a ship or aeroplane

Example: The plane stopped at Zurich to take on some passengers.

Take on = assume tf, responsibility

Example: She took on the task of indexing the book.

Take on = employ

Example: The council has had to take on twenty extra employees to handle their increased workload.

Take out = borrow a library book

Example: I took out all the books I needed for my essay from the library.

Take out = borrow money from a bank or other official lender

Example: Jackie and Anil took out a mortgage to buy a bigger flat.

Take out = extract or remove

Example: The dentist took out all of my wisdom teeth before they started causing any problems.

Take out = go out socially with someone, especially a date

Example: He took her out to a restaurant last Friday night.

Take out = obtain insurance

Example: I took out some health insurance before I went back- packing around Latin America.

Take over = assume control ofa company or organisation

Example: The bank was taken aver by a Hong Kong bank that needed to buy a bank to get into the British market.

Take to = make a habit of something

Example: He’s taken to wearing a baseball cap since his hair started thinning more noticeably.

Take up = fill or occupy time or space

Example: An awful lot of my time at work is taken up with pointless bureaucracy nowadays.

Take up = make clothes shorter

Example: The trousers were too long so I took them up to make them fit.

Take up = start a new etc.

Example: He took up squash as he felt he had to lose some weight.

Talk into =persuade someone to do something

Example: She didn’t want to let me go, but I finally managed to talk her into it.

Talk out of = persuade someone not to do something

Example: He was going to drive home after drinking half a bottle of wine, but his friends talked him out ofit.

Tear apart = disturb or upsetgreatly

Example: People were torn apart when news of the train crash came through.

Tear down =demolish

Example: The estate was torn down so that they could develop the land into luxury flats.

Tear off = remove part ofa form or letter using your hands and not scissors

Example: She tore the slip off the bottom of the form and sent it with her cheque.

Tear up =rip into pieces

Example: He tore the fax up and threw the bits of paper in the bin.

Tell apart =see a difference between two things

Example: They’re identical twins so I cannot tell them apart.

Tell off = chide, talk angrily to someone about something they’ve done wrong.

Example: His fiancee told him offfor arriving nearly an hour late.

Think over = consider something carefully

Example: I’ve thought it over and have made up my mind, I’m going to take the job in Leeds.

Think through = consider all the possibilities and outcomes ofa situation

Example: The plan fell through because they hadn’t thought it through properly.

Throwaway = discard something when no longer needed

Example: I threw the alarm clock away because it had stopped working.

Throw out = get rid of

Example: I threw out all myoId clothes to make some space in my wardrobe.

Throw up = vomit

Example: The prawns she ate at lunch made her throw up and she had to go home early.

Tide over = use something carefully so as not to finish it

Example: This £50 will have to tide me over until I get paid.

Tidy up =put things in the correctplace in a room

Example: I tidied up my bedroom because it was a complete mess.

Tire of =get bored ofsomething

Example: She soon tired ofthe course and dropped out.

Tone down = make something sound more moderate

Example: The Minister tried to tone down what she had said when the press started attacking her.

Top off = finish something in a special way

Example: He complained for an hour and to top it offstarted shouting his head off.

Top up = refill something that isn/t empty yet

Example: Shall I top up your drink while I’m pouring myseff one?

Track down =find after a long search

Example: It took me ages to track them down in the crowd at the football game.

Trade in = exchange something old as part of the price of something new

Example: She traded in her old car for the new model.

Trade off = make a deal or compromise

Example: A longer working week was traded offfor a pay rise.

Trade up = buy lat:!Jer or more expensive items

Example: British wine drinkers have traded up over the last few years from cheap plonk to expensive wines.

Tryon =put clothes on to see if they fit

Example: I tried the jacket art before I bought it.

Try out =test

Example: Scientists are trying out a new drug in the fight against the disease.

Turn against = stop liking and start disliking

Example: The public turned against the government when they became arrogant and ceased to listen.

Turn away = not allow someone to enter a place

Example: The doorman turned him away from the nightclub because he was wearing trainers.

Turn down = reduce volume, temperature, etc.

Example: The room was too hot, so she turned the heating down.

Turn down = reject an offer, invitation, etc.

Example: They offered her the job, but she turned it down.

Turn in =go to bed

Example: I turned in at half past eleven because I had an early start the next morning.

Turn into = become

Example: Tadpoles turn into frogs.

Turn on = cause someone to feel attraction or pleasure

Example: He really turns me on.

Turn on = start a machine

Example: I turned the radio on to get the weather forecast.

Turn out = produce

Example: The factory turns out three thousand units a day.

Turn out = produce an unexpected result

Example: It looked as if we were going to fail, but it turned out well in the end.

Turn out = stop a light

Example: She turned out the lights and went to bed.

Turn to = try toget help

Example: She had nobody to turn to when her husband died.

Turn up = appear

Example: She didn’t turn up for class today.

Turn up = increase volume, temperature, etc.

Example: I turned the music up full blast.

Type up = type a finished version

Example: She typed up her lecture notes and printed them out.

U

Use up = finish or consume all ofsomething

Example: We used up all the olive oil.

W

Wake up = stop sleeping

Example: I woke up at half past six this morning.

Wallk on = continue walking

Example: I saw the accident but just walked on as I didn’t want to have to give a statement.

Walk out on = leave somebody angrily

Example: He walked out on his wife last year.

Want out = want to leave a relationship or arrangement

Example: Jackie wanted out of her marriage.

Warm up = do exercises before a sport

Example: The team warmed up half an hour before the volleyball match.

Wash away = when floods or waves completely remove a structure, building, etc.

Example: The ice cream stall on the beach was washed away in the storm last night.

Wash up =clean everything used to preparefood and eat it

Example: The children washed up after lunch.

Watch over = keep an eye on something or someone to check that there’s no trouble

Example: The lecmrer watched over the smdents as they did the experiment.

Water down = make something weaker and less effective

Example: The Freedom of Information Act was watered down by the Government and didn’t give ordinary people much access to official data flies

Wear away = erode, removegradually

Example: The lawn has been worn away by people walking across it and it’s just bare soil now with hardly a blade of grass.

Wear down = make something weaker

Example: The stress of my job is wearing me down.

Wear off = stop having an effict

Example: The anaesthetic wore off and my tooth started hurting.

Wear out = use something until it stops working

Example: She played the video so many times that she wore the tape out.

Whip out = remove quickly

Example: The police officer whipped out her radio and called for back-up.

Wimp out = not be brave enough to do something

Example: I was going to have the hottest curry on the menu, but I wimped out and had a mild lamb Korma instead.

Wind down = relax

Example: I’m going to wind down in the country this weekend and do nothing.

Wind up = close a company because it’s unprofitable

Example: The company was wound up when the creditors demanded payment.

Wire up = make electrical connections

Example: She wired her new stereo system up as soon as she got home.

Wise up = stop being stupid

Example: His supervisor told him to wise up and start following the rules or else he’d lose his job.

Work off = exercise to remove stress or weight

Example: She goes to the gym to work off her anger.

Work on = improve or develop

Example: Scientists are working on genetically modified crops and foods.

Work out = end nicely

Example: Things were going wrong for them but fortunately it all worked out in the end.

Work out = find the answer or solution

Example: I couldn’t work out all the answers to the crossword puzzle.

urap up = cover in paper

Example: They wrapped up the presents then put a ribbon around them.

Wrap up =dress warmly

Example: u+ap up carefully or you’ll catch your death of cold out- side in that rain.

Write down = make notes

Example: I wrote her mobile number down on a scrap of paper and I’ve lost it.

Write in = send a letter to a TV etc.

Example: They asked viewers to write in with their opinions and suggestions.

Write off = destroy a car in an accident

Example: He wrote the car offin an accident on the motorway.

Y

Yield to = surrender

Example: I tried hard to resist, but in the end I yielded to temptation and ate it all.

Z

Zoom in = focus more closely

Example: The camera zoomed in on his face.

C

Call after = name someone after somebody else
Example: She was called Rose after her late grandmother.

Callfor = demand
Example: The Opposition party called for the Minister’s’ resignation after the scandal broke.

Call for = go to collect something
Example: The courier calledfor your parcel, but I told him it wasn’t ready yet.

Call for = telephone for something
Example: I’ll call for a cab right away.

Call for = go and collect someone to take them out
Example: I’ll call for you at seven, so be ready because the film starts at half past.

Callfor = require
Example: An emergency like this calls for some pretty drastic action.

Call in = get someone to come and do a job
Example: We had to call in a plumber because the sink was leaking and I had no idea how to fix it.

Call in = stop and visit
Example: I called in on Jenny on my way home because she’s not very well at the moment and I wanted to see if she needed anything.

Call off = cancel
Example: The concert had to be called off because the singer went down with a bad case of flu.

Call off = order someone to stop attacking
Example: Call offyour lawyers. We can work something out.

Call on = ask for help
Example: The President called on the wealthy countries for financial aid after the floods destroyed much of the country’s agriculture.

Call on = visit
Example: As we were in the area, we called on my sister-in-law.

Call up = summon someone for military service
Example: The army called up the reserve soldiers when the war broke out.

Call up = telephone
Example: I called him up as soon as I got to a phone to tell him the news.

Calm down = stop being angry or emotionally excited
Example: When I lose my temper, it takes ages for me to calm down again.

Carried away = get so emotional that you lose control
Example: The team got earned away when they won the championship that they started shouting and throwing things around.

Carry off = win
Example: She carried offthe first prize in the competition.

Carry on = continue
Example: Carry on quietly with your work until the substitute teacher arrives.

Carry out =perform a task
Example: The government is carrying out test on growing geneti- cally modified crops.

Carry out = food boughtfrom a restaurant to take away
Example: I’m toO tired to cook- let’s get a carry-out.

Catch on = become popular
Example: Many critics were shocked when techno caught on in the clubs.

Catch on = finally understand what isgoing on
Example: Everyone else realised what was happening, but it took Henry ages to catch on.

Catt:h up = get work, etc, ttp to date.
Example: I was ill for a fortnight and now I’ve got to catch up on the work I missed.

Chance upon = fina something by accident
Example: I chanced upon a very rare book in car boot sale and bought it for 65p.

Charge with = accuse somebody ofa crime
Example: She was arrested in customs last night and has been charged with smuggling.

Chase up = ensure that someone remembers to do something
Example: The is chasing me up about my overdue books.

Cheat on = be sexually unfaithful
Example: She cheated on me with my friend.

Check in = register on arriving at a hotel or at the airport
Example: They checked in at the Ritz yesterday.

Check out = pay the bill when leaving a hotel
Example: She checked out and took a cab to the airport.

Check out = die
Example: She checked out last week, the funeral’s tomorrow.

Check out of = settle up and pay before leaving a hotel
Example: Guests have to check out of the hotel before midday.

Cheer up = be less unhappy
Example: Come on, CHEER Up, it isn’t all bad, you know.

Chew over = think about an issue
Example: He asked for a few days to chew the matter over before he made a final decision.

Chicken out =be too afraid to do something
Example: I chickened out of the bungee jumping when I saw how high it was.

Chill out = relax
Example: I’m staying at home and chilling out this evening.

Chuck up = vomit, be sick
Example: He got ridiculously drunk and chucked up in the back of the minicab on the way home.

Clean out = tidy up thoroughly and throwaway unwanted things.
Example: I really must clean the study out, there’s stuff all over the floor and piles of paper everywhere.

Clean up = tidy and clean
Example: Clean this bedroom up, it’s a disgrace.

Clear out = tidy up thoroughly and throwaway unwanted stuff.
Example: I spent the whole weekend clearing out the attic as it was full of papers and other junk.

Clear up = the end ofan infection
Example: I took the antihistamines and the rash cleared up right away.

Clear up = tidy up
Example: I’d better clear away the mess before leave.

Click through = open an advertisement on the Internet
Example: Only a tiny fraction of users ever bother clicking through the banner adverts.

Climb down = accept that you are wrong and change your position
Example: The Prime Minister had to climb down over his tax proposals because there was so much opposition from the members of his own party.

Close down = close a business permanently
Example: The firm closed down during the recession because it couldn’t compete with the cut-price imports pouring in.

Close down = close a shop, branch or business permanently
Example: The banks have closed down a lot of branches in villages over the last few years.

Cloud over = get very cloudy
Example: The morning started bright and warm, but it clouded over around midday and poured with rain.

Come across = find by accident
Example: I came across myoid school reports when I was clearing out my desk.

Come across = agree to have sex with someone
Example: I was surprised when she came across on the first night.

Come across = the way other people see you
Example: He came across as shy because he spoke so quietly.

Come apart = break into pieces
Example: It came apart when I tried to lift it off the floor and I had to glue it back together.

Come before = appear in court chat;!Jed with a crime or offence
Example: He came before the court on charges of speeding.

Comedown =rain
Example: Just look at the rain coming down! I’m not going out in that.

Come down = travel
Example: When you’re next in London, come down and see us.

Come down on = criticise heavily
Example: The management really came down on him for losing the contract.

Come from = country or town where you were born
Example: She comes from Somalia.

Come in = arriveforflights
Example: The plane came in at two-thirty in the morning.

Come in = place or ranking in a competition, etc.
Example: I did my best but came in last but one in the race.
Example: Reports are just coming in of an assassination attempt on the President.

Come into = be important or relevant
Example: Money doesn’t come into it, I simply will not do it under any circumstances.

Come into = inherit
Example: She came into a lot of money when her grandmother died.

Come into use = start being used
Example: The computerised system came into use at the end of last year.

Come off = when something breaks off
Example: I picked it up and the handle came offin my hand.

Come offit = I don’t believe what you’re saying
Example: Come offit, tell me the truth for goodness’ sake.

Come on = encouragement
Example: Come on, don’t give up now when you’re so close to finishing.

Come on = start an illness
Example: I’ve got a bit of a headache. I hope it doesn’t mean I’ve got flu coming on.

Come on =startfunctioning (machines, etc.)
Example: The central heating comes on automatically an hour before I have to get up.

Come out =a secret is revealed
Example: The details of the scandal came out in the press and she had to resign.

Come out = be published or otherwise available to the public
Example: The band’s new CD is coming out in September.

Come out =disappear when washed
Example: The red wine I spilt just will not come out of the carpet no matter what I try to clean it with.

Come out = let people know that you are lesbian orgay
Example: She came out at university and has been living with her partner, Jane, for the last couple of years.

Come out = when the sun appears
Example: It started cloudy, but then the sun came out and we all went to the park.

Come out in = have a rash or similar skin problem
Example: She came out in a nasty rash after touching the poisonous plant by mistake.

Come over = feel strange
Example: I came over all faint and weak because my sugar level was too low. (British)

Come round = become wake up from anaesthetic
Example: She came round and learned that the operation had been a complete success.

Come round = change your opinion
Example: At first she didn’t like the idea, but she came round to our way of thinking in the end.

Come through = arrive (messages and information)
Example: News is coming through of a major accident on the M25, where freezing fog has been making driving conditions extremely dangerous.

Come to = become conscious) wake up from anaesthetic
Example: She came to an hour after the operation.

Come to = result in
Example: The two men started arguing but they soon came to blows and started fighting in earnest.

Come up = appear
Example: I’ll be late home tonight because something’s come up at work has to be ready for tomorrow morning.

Come up = rise (the sun)
Example: The sun came up just as we reached the outskirts of the town.

Come up against = encounter problems or difficulties
Example: They came up against a lot of opposition to their plans for an out-of-town supermarket development.

Come up with = think of a solution, excuse etc.
Example: Nobody could come up with a satisfactory explanation for the accident.

Come upon =find by chance
Example: I came upon the book in a little second-hand bookshop in Dorset.

Conk out = fall fast asleep
Example: I was exhausted and conked out on the sofa.

Cool down =get cooler
Example: I left the tea for a minute until it had cooled down enough to drink.

Cool down = become calm
Example: It took me ages to cool down after the argument.

Cop out = choose an easy alternative
Example: She was going to take a Master’s degree but copped out and chose the Diploma course instead.

Could do with =need or want something
Example: I could really do with a cup of tea.

Count in =include or involve
Example: If you’re going on that skiing holiday, you can count me in, I’d love to go.

Crack down = use more authority than usual
Example: The police always crack down on drink-driving offences over the Christmas period.

Crack up = have a nervous breakdown
Example: He cracked up after his son died and had to take a couple of months off work.

Crack up = have bad on a mobile phone
Example: You’ll have to talk louder, you’re cracking up.

Crash out = sleep at someone’s house because you are too tired, drunk, etc. to leave
Example: Dave crashed out at a friend’s flat after the end-of-term party.

Crop up = appear unexpectedly
Example: I’m going to be late tonight as something has just cropped up at work.

Cross out =put as line through some writing to show it is wrong
Example: She crossed out her mistakes and wrote the correct answers above them.

Cutback =reduce
Example: The firm cut back production because sales were sluggish.

Cut down = consume less
Example: I’m trying to cut down the amount of coffee I drink during the day.

Cut down = shoot
Example: A lot of soldiers were cut down by enemy fire as they stormed the airport.

Cut down on = reduce
Example: Doctors advised her to cut down on the amount of saturated fats in her diet.

Cut it out = stop your unfair or unreasonable behaviour
Example: Will you two idiots cut it out and keep quiet.

Cut off = disconnect
Example: The telephone’s been cut off because we didn’t pay the bill.

Cut off = isolate or make inaccessible
Example: The heavy snow has blocked many roads and cut off a number of villages.

Cut out = exclude
Example: I’m cutting out salt from my diet.

Cut out = when an engine or motor stops
Example: The car cut out at the traffic lights just as they went green.

D

Dawn on = finally realise or understand something
Example: The truth only dawned on me much later.

Die away = become quieter or inaudible (of a sound)
Example: The last notes died away and the audience burst into applause.

Die down = decrease or become quieter
Example: It was on the front pages of all the papers for a few days, but the interest gradually died down.

Die out = become extinct or disappear
Example: Some scientists say that the dinosaurs died out when a comet hit the earth and caused a nuclear winter.

Dig in = start eating greedily
Example: We were starving so we really dug in when the food finally did arrive.

Dig into = reach inside to get something
Example: She dug into her handbag and pulled out a bunch of keys.

Dig up = find something secret
Example: The reporters eventually dug up the truth about the affair.

Do away with = get rid of
Example: The United Kingdom did away with the death penalty in 1965.

Do out of = cheat somebody out ofsomething that is rightfully theirs
Example: They lied on the reference and did me out ofany chance of getting the job.

Do up = close orfasten etc.
Example: You must do up your safety belt in the back of cars and taxis now.

Do up =repair and renovate
Example: It took them six months to do up the house before they could actually move in.

Doze off = fall asleep
Example: The movie was a bit boring and I dozed off halfway through.

Drag on = be unnecessarily long
Example: The meeting dragged on for two and a half hours.

Draw up = prepare a contract
Example: The contract was drawn up by our solicitor.

Draw up = when a vehicle stops
Example: The police car drew up alongside him at the red lights and asked him to pull over.

Dream of =not think or consider
Example: I wouldn’t even dream oftelling her that.

Dream up = invent something, have an idea
Example: They dreamed up the scheme for the improvements and it was accepted by the board.

Dredge up = discover thi11gs about past
Example: The newspapers dredged up the details of his affair with his research assistant.

Dress up = dress very smartly
Example: It’s an informal party so there’s no need to dress up.

Drink up = finish a drink
Example: Drink up, please, it’s closing time.

Drive off= drive awayfrom a place
Example: She slammed the car door shut and drove off withoutsaying a word.

Drop in = visit without having made arrangetnents
Example: I was in the area so I dropped in at the office to see her.

Drop out = quit a course
Example: She dropped out of college and.went straight into a good job.

Dwell on = spend a lot oftime on something
Example: The programme dwelled on little other than the scandal.

Dwell upon = spend a lot oftime on something
Example: She dwelt upon the economic situation in her speech.

E

Ease off = reduce pressure
Example: She eased offthe accelerator to let the car slow down.

Ease up = relax, calm down
Example: She asked her teacher to ease up because she was feeling verv stressed.

Eat out = eat in a restaurant
Example: We couldn’t be bothered to cook so wc atc out last night.

Eat up = eat all ofsomething
Example: If you don’t eat up your greens, you won’t get any dessert.

Edge up = slowly
Example: She ct[rred up behind the bus at the red light.

Egg On = ellcotwage
Example: The other students egged him on when he started arguing with the teacher.

Eke out = make something like lIwney last as long as possible
Example: Most students have to eke out their income because they have so little money to live on.

Embark on = start a project or venture
Example: Piere embarked on an MBA at Instead last autumn.

Embark upon = start a project or venture
Example: Fernando has just embarked upon a completely new di- rection professionally.

End up = become or do something unplanned
Example: We couldn’t get tickets for Egypt so we ended up going to Turkey instead.

Enter for = join or enter a competition
Example: They entered for the national championship but weren’t good enough.

Eye up = look carefully at someone
Example: The guy eyed the other man up because he was behaving suspiciously.

F

Face up to = accept an unpleasant truth
Example: Many people find it hard to face up to the fact tlUt they are getting old.

Fall back = retreat
Example: The army fell back after losing the battle.

Fall down = fall on theground
Example: I slipped on the ice andfell down.

Fall down = have a weak point
Example: The argument falls down when you look at how much it’ll cost.

Fall for = be attracted to somebody, fall in love
Example: He fell for her the moment their eyes met.

Fall for = believe a lie or a piece ofdeception
Example: He fell for my story and allowed me yet another exten- sion for the submission of my thesis.

Fall in = collapse
Example: The ceiling fell in hurting a lot of people.

Fall off = decrease
Example: The membership fell off dramatically when the chair-person resigned.

Fall out = argue and be on bad terms with someone
Example: Theyfell out over the decision and hardly speak to each other any more.

Fall out = lose hair
Example: He’s started getting worried about baldness because his hair is falling out rather quickly.

Fall over = fall on theground
Example: I slipped on the ice andfell over.

Fall through = be unsuccessful
Example: The plans fell through when planning permission was refused.

Fathom out = understand something
Example: I couldn’t fathom out what she wanted from me. (British)

Feel up to =feel capable ofdoing something
Example: I’m so tired. I don’t think. I feel up to going out tonight.

Fight off =fight an attacker and force them back
Example: The old lady managed to fight the muggers offand they didn’t get her purse.

Figure out = find the answer to a problem
Example: The police couldn’t figure out how the burglars had got into the warehouse.

File away = put a docu’I1’lent in the correct place for storage in a filing system
Example: I filed a copy of the letter away for my records.

Fill in = complete a form (UK)
Example: I filled in the application form and posted it off.

Fill in on = give someone information
Example: I’m sorry I missed the meeting, could you fill me in on what happened.

Fill out = complete a fimn (US)
Example: I filled out the application form and mailed it.

Fill up = fill something completely
Example: I stopped at the garage and filled up with petrol.

Filter out = remove something unwanted
Example: Itfilters out all the impurities and chemicals in tap water so that it tastes better.

Find out = discover
Example: I went to the library to find out all I could about the life and work of Joe Meek.

Finish off = finish completely
Example: Theyfinished offall the chocolates and had to go to the all-night garage to buy some more.

Fire away = ask questions
Example: What do you want to know? fire away and I’ll tell you.

Fire up = Start a computer
Example: Shefired up the computer and printed out a hard copy of the files.

Fit in =get on in a group of people
Example: I didn’t fit in with the other people working there so I left and found another job.

Fit in = have enough time or space for something
Example: I didn’t have time to fit in another appointment.

Fix up = make an arrangement
Example: He fixed up an appointment for me to see a specialist.

Flesh out =add more details or information
Example: The recent government report fleshed out the draft proposals.

Flog off = sell something cheaply toget rid ofit
Example: The council flogged off the land cheaply to a developer who had close links to a few of the councillors. (British)

Focus on = concentrate
Example: The report focuses on the company’s weak points.

Fold up = make a sheet ofpaper smaller
Example: Darren folded up the letter and put it in an envelope.

G

Geek out = talk at length about computing
Example: Henry always geeks out at parties and bores all the non- specialists, nearly everyone within earshot, to death.

Get around = become known
Example: It didn’t take long for the news toget around once it got into the newspapers.

Get around to = finally manage to do smnething
Example: It always takes me ages to get around to replying to letters.

Get at = criticise
Example: His boss is always getting at him for arriving late.

Get at = mean
Example: What do you think she’sgetting I’ve no idea what she wants.

Get away = escape
Example: The robbers got away in a stolen car, which the police later found abandoned.

Get away = go on holiday orfor a short break
Example: We love to get away from everything and relax in the country.

Get away with = notget caught doing smnething wrong
Example: Thieves got away with two Picassos, which were never found.

Get back = return
Example: The train was held up so we didn’tget back home until midnight.

Get behind with = be late paying instalnumts for smnething.
Example: If you get behind with mongage payments, you might lose your home.

Get by = have just enough money to live on
Example: They’re finding it increasingly difficult to get by since their daughter was born.

Get down = depress someone
Example: The miserable weather in winter reallygets me down.

Get down to = start work ‘
Example: I find it extremely difficult toget down to doing any revision for examinations.

Get in = arrangefor someone to do a job
Example: The air conditioning has broken down, we’ll have toget a technician in to fix it.

Get in = arrive (train, plane etc.)
Example: Her planegets in at 2am our time.

Get in = arrive home
Example: She didn’tget in till twelve o’clock because she’d been out for a few drinks with her mates.

Get in = enter a car or taxi
Example: The taxi pulled up and wegot in.

Get off = escape punishment
Example: He got off on a technicality and left the court as a free man.

Get off =leave a bus” train” etc.
EXample: Wegot offthe bus and walked to my house.

Get offwith = have casual sex with
Example: He got offwith her at the party.

Get on = continue doing something
Example: The teacher asked the pupils to get on with some work quietly as she had to leave the classroom.

Get on = enter a bus” train” plane” etc.
Example: Wegot on the train at Plymouth and went up to London.

Get on = make progress
Example: How are yougetting on with your Spanish lessons?

Get on well = have a good relationship
Example: Fortunatel); I get on well with my boss.

Get out of = avoid doing something you dislike
Example: I said I wasn’t feeling well andgot out ofthe extra work.

Get out of = leave a car, van, etc.
Example: We got out of the taxi and paid the driver.

Get over = recover
Example: It took me ages toget over the bout of flu.

Get over with = do something unpleasant rather than delaying it any more
Example: I got the test over with rather than have to worry about it any longer.

Get roundaround = persuade someone
Example: She didn’t want to let me do it, but I succeeded ingetting round her. (In American English ‘around’ is used)

Get roundaround to =finally manage to do something
Example: It always takes me ages toget round to writing letters. (In American English ‘around’ is used)

Get through = contact
Example: I tried calling her mobile phone, but I couldn’tget through.

Get to = annoy, irritate
Example: Don’t let herget to you, she’s just in a bad mood.

Get together = meet socially
Example: Wegot together in the pub for a drink.

Get up = get out ofbed
Example: Iget up at seven o’clock on weekdays, but lie in till noon at the weekend.

Get up = organise
Example: Theygot up a list of two hundred people who were opposed to the local council’s plans.

Get up to = do something wrong or naughty
Example: The children are always getting up to some trouble or other.

Give away = entrust your daughter to her husband during the marnage ceremony
Example: Hegave his daughter away and told the groom to lOOK after her.

Give away = tell a secret
Example: She didn’tgive anything away about the party so it came as a complete surprise to me.

Give back = return something you-‘ve borrowed
Example: Igave her back the twenty pounds she’d lent to me.

Give in = stop doing something because it’s too hard or requires too much energy
Example: I couldn’t fInish the crossword puzzle and had togive in and look at the answers.

Give in = submit homework., etc.
Example: The projects have to begiven in three weeks before we break up for the end of term. (British)

Give off = emit pollution or something else unpleasant
Example: The police stopped the van because it was giving off a lot of black smoke.

Give out = distribute
Example: Somebody was giving leaflets out in front of the underground station.

Give out = stop working
Example: I’d been having trouble with my laptop and it finally gave out at the weekend.

Give up = stop doing something that had been a habit
Example: I gave up taking sugar in tea and coffee to lose weight.

Give up on = lose faith in or stop believing in something or someone
Example: I gave up on them when I heard what they were saying about me behind my back.

Gloss over = try to minimise the importance ofsomething
Example: The Minister tried to gloss over the report that was critical of her department.

Go about = deal with something
Example: How should Igo about telling her the bad news?

Go after = chase, try to get
Example: The bird went after the pigeon, but it flew away.

Go against = lose a decision or a verdict ofa court
Example: If the decisiongoes against me, I’ll go bankrupt.

Go ahead = proceed
Example: The construction of the bypass went ahead despite the protests from environmentalists.

Go along with = accept a decision or suggestion
Example: I didn’t really agree but went along with the decision because I was in the minority.

Go by = the pass in oftime
Example: Ten years went by before we saw each other again.

Go by =trust or depend on for correct information
Example: Don’tgo by watch, it’s usually a bit slow.

Go down = decrease, get smaller
Example: The price of scanners has gone down recently.

Go down = sink
Example: The Titanic went down after it hit an iceberg on its maiden voyage.

Go down = sunset
Example: The sun went down at seven o’clock.

Go down with = fall ill
Example: She went down with a virus. (British- Americans use ‘come down with’)

Gofor = attack
Example: The neighbour’S dog wentfor the postman and bit him.

Go for =be attracted to
Example: She tends to go for guys like him.

Go for = choose, select
Example: I’llgo for the soup of the day, followed by the duck.

Go in = go to hospital for treatment, surgery, etc.
Example: He went in for a triple bypass operation two days ago.

Go in for = enter a competition
Example: She went into banking after she’d finished university.

Go off = explode (bomb), start ringing (alarm)
Example: The fire alarm went off because someone was smoking in the toilets.

Go off = go bad
Example: The milk went offbccause I forgot to put it in the fridge.

Go off = start to dislike
Example: I went off her when she lied to me. (British)

Go on = continue
Example: He went on and on talking and I was so bored.

Go on = happen
Example: There are loads of people out in the street, what’s going on?

Go on about = talk too much
Example: He’s always going on about his kids.

Go out = stops burning
Example: The candle went out and left us in darkness.

Go out with = have a relationship with
Example: He’s been going out with his girlfriend for around six months now.

Go through = experience
Example: He went in for the photography prize, but didn’t win.

Go into = discuss in some detail
Example: They refused to go into exactly what was wrong

Go into = enter a profession
Example: You wouldn’t believe what I went through when I was ill!

Go through = read again
Example: I went through my notes before the exam.

Go through with = do or complete sotnething you’ve agreed to
Example: He did promise, but I doubt that he’llgo through with it.

Go under = go bankrupt
Example: Many small shops are going under because they cannot compete with the supermarkets.

Go up = rise
Example: The price of petrol has gone up sharply because of the
increase in duty in the Government’s budget.

Go up to = approach
Example: She went up to him and asked him if he wanted a drink.

Go with = combine nicely
Example: Does this tie go with my shin?

Go without = not have
Example: I had to go without lunch today because I didn’t have any time.

Grass up = report someone to a person in authority
Example: She didn’t to grass them up, even though they’d been bullying her badly. (British)

Grow into = grow to fit large clothes
Example: The jacket’s a bit big, but she’ll grow into it.

Grow out of = grow too large for clothes
Example: Hegrew out ofthose shoes in no time at all.

Grow up = mature, becotne adult
Example: Hegrew up in the West Country.

H

Hand down = pass on to the nextgeneration
Example: The jewellery has been handed down in my family for generations.

Hand in = submit work for appraisal
Example: I handed my homework in late as usual.

Hand out = distribute
Example: The teacher handed out the worksheet to the class.

Hand over = give
Example: The robbers told the clerk to hand over all the money.

Hang on = wait
Example: Could you hang on for a moment till she’s free.

Hang out = spend time socially
Example: He hangs out in the pub The Monarch, he’s there most of the nights.

Hang up = end a phone call
Example: I lost my temper and hung up on her.

Harp on = talk repeatedly about something
Example: I was late twice last week and my boss keeps harping on about it.

Have on = be wearing
Example: What did Joan have on at the party?

Heat up = makefood hot
Example: He heated the soup up in the microwave.

Help out = give assistance
Example: She really helped me out when I was going through my divorce.

Hit on = have an idea
Example: I suddenly hit on the solution

Hold back = not show etnotion
Example: It was really hard to hold back the tears.

Hold down = keep a job
Example: He’s so unreliable that he can never hold down a job for more than a couple of months.

Hold off = when bad weather doesn’t appear
Example: The rain held offuntil we’d got back home.

Hold on = wait
Example: Could you hold on for a minute, she’ll be free in a moment.

Hold up = delay when travelling
Example: I was held up by the terrible traffic and arrived half an hour late for my appointment.

Hold up = rob with violence or threats thereof
Example: Two armed men held up the bank in High Street this morning and got away with £75,000.

Home in on = target
Example: The government is homing in on benefit fraud.

I

Iron out = remove small problems or irregularities
Example: The management team ironed out the tax problems before they gave the project the OK.

J

Jam on = apply or operate something forcefully
Example: Jack jammed on the brakes when the rabbit ran in front of his car.

Jazz up = make something more interesting or attractive
Example: The show was getting stale so they jazzed it up with some new scenes.

Jot down =make a quick note
Example: I jotted down her number on a scrap of paper and I can’t find it now.

K

Keep at = continue with som.ething difficult
Example: She found the course hard but she kept at it and completed it successfully.

Keep off = not talk about
Example: She kept offthe subject of her divorce.

Keep on = continue
Example: He kept on trying and succeeded in the end.

Keep up = not let someone go to bed
Example: My neighbours kept me up till after 4 am with their loud music last night.

Keep up at = continue, not quit
Example: Learning a language is difficult, but if you keep up at it, you’ll succeed in the end.

Keep up with = move at the same rate
Example: He walks too fast and it’s really hard to keep up with him.

Keep up with = stay up to date
Example: It’s hard to keep up with all the latest improvements and breakthroughs in technology nowadays.

Key in =enter numbers or information into a computer or electronic system
Example: It took me ages to key in all the information into the database.

Kick in =when a drug starts to take effect
Example: Her hay fever didn’t feel half as bad once the antihistamines had kicked in.

Kick off= startagame offootball
Example: The match kicks offat three o’clock.

Kick out = expel
Example: The family kicked the au pair out when they found out that she was planning to move to work for another household.

Knock down =demolish
Example: They knocked down the old church and built a block of flats in its place.

Knock down =hit and injure someone
Example: The car knocked her down and she broke her arm.

Knock off =finish workfor the day
Example: We knocked offearly on Friday to avoid the rush hour queues.

Knock out = hit and make somebody unconscious
Example: The reigning middleweight champion knocked out the challenger in the fourth round of the fight.

L

Large it up = have a good time when intoxicated
Example: They were larging it up in the rave.

Lay down = establish rules or procedures
Example: The rules of the sport were laid down early in the nineteenth century.

Layoff = make an employee redundant
Example: The hotel laid off twenty staff because tourist numbers were down.

Lay on = supply
Example: They laid on a buffet lunch at the conference.

Layout = spend money
Example: They laid out thousands of pounds on their wedding reception.

Lead to = result in
Example: The investigation led to the arrest of a number of suspects.

Leave on = not turn off
Example: Leave the TV on, I want to hear the football results.

Leave out = not include
Example: He was left out of the side because he hasn’t been play- ing too well lately.

Let down = disappoint, foil to keep an arrangement
Example: She failed to turn up and I felt badly let down.

Let in = allow someone to enter
Example: The door staff didn’t let him in the nightclub because he was wearmg Jeans.

Let off = not punish
Example: The judge let him off with a fme rather than a prison sentence since it was his first offence.

Let on = tell a secret
Example: I didn’t mean to let on about the party, I just said it without thinking.

Let out = allow to leave orgo out
Example: The convict was let out of prison after serving five years of an eight year sentence.

Let out = make a sound
Example: He let out a huge sigh of relief when he heard the results.

Lift off = leave the ground-rocket or spaceship
Example: 5-4-3-2-1- we have lift-off!

Light up = light or start smoking a cigarette
Example: Asif lit up as soon as he got out of the building.

Listen outfor = listen for a particular noise or sound
Example: They put their coats on and listened outfor the minicab.

Live it up = have a good time by spending a lot of money
Example: She’s been living it up like crazy since she won the lottery.

Live off = use money earned
Example: They find it hard to live offthe money they make.

Live on = use money for basic necessities
Example: They have to live on $200 a week.

Lock up = close all doors, windows, etc.
Example: She locked up after everyone had left and went home.

Log off = exit a computer system
Example: When she’d finished working on the spreadsheet, she logged offand left the office.

Log on = enter a computiir system
Example: He entered his password for the college intranet and logged on.

Log out = exit a computer system
Example: Danny closed the programs and logged out when it was time to go home.

Look after = take care
Example: Their auntie looked after them while their mother was in hospital.

Look back = think about the past
Example: Old people often look back on over their lives.

Look down on = have a low opinion of
Example: He looks down on his colleagues because he thinks he’s better than they are.

Look For = try to find
Example: I’ve been lookingfor all their hidden flies, but I can’t find them anywhere.

Look forward to = wait for or anticipate smnething pleasant
Example: I’m looking forward to meeting you.

Look in = Make a quick visit
Example: I’ll look in on them on my way home.

Look in on = visit briefly to see ifeverything’s all right
Example: I’m going to look in on Gran on the way home tonight as she’s been a bit unwell recently.

Look into = investigate
Example: We’ll look into the problem and come back to you when we have the information.

Look on = watch something like a crime without helping
Example: The crowd just looked on as the old lady was mugged.

Look out = be careful
Example: Look out, you’re going to drop that!

Look round = inspect a house
Example: We looked round the house and decided that we didn’t like it enough to buy it.

Look up = consult a reference work phonebook, etc. for a specific piece ofinformation.
Example: I didn’t know the correct spelling so I had to look it up in the dictionary.

Look up to = respect
Example: She’s looks up to her mother.

M

Make for = head in a certain direction
Example: We made for home when it started raining.

Make into =change something into something else
Example: Many churches have been made into flats in recent years.

Make it up to = try to compensate for doing something wrong
Example: He tried to make it up to her, but she wouldn’t speak to him.

Make offwith =steal
Example: Thieves made offwith over a million dollars in the robbery.

Make out = make a cheque payable to sumebody
Example: Please make the cheque out to RGM Productions Ltd.

Make out = pretend
Example: He made out that he was ill so that he didn’t have to go to school.

Make up = stop being angry with smneone
Example: They are always arguing, but they make up again very quickly.

Make up for = compensate
Example: I sent her a present to try to make up for my appalling behaviour.

Mark down = give a student a lowergradefor a particular reason
Example: Students who gave obviously rehearsed answers were marked down, while those who spoke naturally were rewarded accordingly.

Meet wiph = have something happen to you
They met with some problems they hadn’t anticipated.

Mix up = confuse
Example: I always mix those two sisters up because they look so like each other.

Mouth off = speak angrtly about something
Example: I always get angry and start mouthing offwhen the news is on TV.

Move on = change the subject or your job
Example: She moved on to another company where the salary was considerably better.

Move on = make people nwve from a place
Example: The police moved the crowd on because they were holding up the traffic.

Mullover =think about an issue or problem
Example: She said that she’d had to mull it over before deciding what was

N

Nag at = repeatedly criticise someone verbally
Example: My boss is always nagging at me about my arriving a few minutes late for work.

Note down = write something short like a phone number for future reference.
Example: She noted down my fax number so that she could send me the documents when she got to the office.

O

Open up = start to talk freely about something
Example: She hates to open up and discuss her feelings.

Optfor = choose
Example: I opted for an endowment mortgage and lost a lot of money.

Opt out = choose not to be part of something
Example: The UK opted out of a lot of EU legislation on working hours and conditions.

Owe to = be the reason for something
Example: She owes her success to hard work and determination.

Own up = confess
Example: Nobody owned up to breaking the window.

P

Pan out = the way a situation develops
Example: I don’t know how things willpan out now the company’s been taken over.

Pass away = die
Example: Sadly, Georgia’s uncle passed away yesterday after a short illness.

Pass on = give a message to someone
Example: I’ll pass the message on when she gets here.

Pass out = faint, lose consciousness
Example: He got so drunk that he passed out.

Pay back = repay money borrowed
Example: I paid baclz the twenty pounds I’d borrowed.

Pay back = take revenge on
Example: I’m going to pay him back for that insult.

Pay for = purchase
Example: I paid twenty pounds for the book.

Pay into = deposit money
Example: I paid the cash into my account.

Payoff = completely repay a debt
Example: The mortgage will be paid off in twenty-five years.

Payoff = produce a profitable or successful result
Example: Their patience paid off when he finally showed up and signed the contract.

Perk up = feel better or happier
Example: She was ill in bed with flu, but she perked up a bit when some friends dropped by.

Pick at = eat unwillingly
Example: I wasn’t very hungry so I just picked at my food.

Pick out = choose or select
Example: She picked out the ones she wanted to take and left the rest.
Example: The victim couldn’t pick out her attacker from the photos the police showed her.

Pick up =improve
Example: Sales picked up a bit during the Christmas period.

Pick up = learn quickly
Example: She picked up Spanish in six months.

Pile up = accumulate
Example: Work just keeps on piling up and I really can’t manage to get it all done.

Pipe down =be quiet (often as an imperative)
Example: The lecturer asked the students to pipe down and pay attention.

Play down = try to tnake something seem less important
Example: The Government has tried to play down the importance of the minister’s resignation.

Plug in =connect tnachines to the electricity supply
Example: He plugged the TV in and turned it on full blast.

Plumpfor = choose
Example: I plumped for the steak frites.

Point out = make someone aware ofsomething
Example: He pointed out that I only had two weeks to get the whole thing finished.

Polish off= finish
Example: She polishes off half a bottle of neat spirits every night.

Pop out =go outfor a short time
Example: I’m just popping out to the shops. Do you need anything while I’m out?

Pop up = appear, like windows and boxes opening on a computer screen.
Example: The dialogue box popped up when I pressed Enter.

Pour down = rain hard
Example: It poured down all day so we had to remain indoors.

Prattle on = talk too much
Example: Geoff just prattled on rather than give a straight answer.

Price up = charge more for something
Example: In rural areas where they have a monopoly, some garages price up fuel because there’s nowhere else to buy it.

Print out = make a hard copy ofa computer document
Example: He printed out the letter and checked through it carefully.

Pull away = when a vehicle moves from a place
Example: The car pulled away from the lights at high speed.

Pull in = when a train arrives at a station
Example: The train pulled in and we rushed to meet her as she got off.

Pull off = manage to do something difficult or tricky
Example: No-one thought that she would be able to do it, but she pulled it offin the end.

Pull up = slow and stop a car
Example: The cab pulled up outside my house and I got out.

Push in = get in a queue without waiting
Example: She just pushed in the queue in front of me at the supermarket checkout.

Put away = put something back in the correct place
Example: He put the dictionary back on the shelf after he’d finished the crossword.

Put back = rearrange something for a later time
Example: The AGM has been put back until July the seventeenth.

Putby = savefor thefuture
Example: I try to put some money by every month towards our summer holiday.

Put down = kill an animal because it’s etc.
Example: He had his dog put down because it was in a lot of pain from its tumours.

Put in = install
Example: They had to put in a whole new central heating system because the house was so cold.

Putinfor =makea request
Example: He put in for a transfer to the new branch.

Put off = postpone
Example: The concert’s been put offuntil next month because the singer’s got a throat infection.

Put off = stop liking something or somebody
Example: I was really put off by the way he eats with his mouth open.

Put on = getfat
Example: He’s put on a lot of weight since he gave up smoking.

Put out = broadcast
Example: Several charities put out an appeal on TV for money for the victims of the flooding in Mozambique.

Put out = disturb or trouble someone
Example: Would it be putting you out greatly if I asked to change to another day.

Put out = extinguish a cigarette, fire, etc.
Example: He put out his cigarette before entering the building.

Put through = connect someone by phone
Example: Could you put me through to extension 259 please.

Put towards = make a financial contribution
Example: She put $250 towards the cost of the repairs and we had to pay the rest.

Put up = allow someone to stay at your house for a night or a few days.
Example: She put me up for the night because I’d missed the last bus and there were no night buses running.

Put up = increase prices, taxes, duties, etc.
Example: The government has put tuition fees for undergraduate students up again.

Put up with = tolerate
Example: I can’t put up with my neighbour’s noise any longer, it’s driving me mad.

Q

Quieten down = fall silent
Example: The audience quietened down when the lights were switched off in the auditorium and the play was ready to begin.

R

Rat on = inform authorities about someone’s wrongdoings
Example: She ratted to the police on her neighbours because they were smuggling alcohol from France.

Rattle off = quote figures rapidly
Example: She rattled offload of statistics which nobody could understand.

Read off = read a list aloud for someone to write down
Example: I read offthe figures and she wrote them down in her
notebook.
Read out = read aloud rather than silently
Example: The teacher read out the names of the students who’d passed.

Reckon on = the minimum expected
Example: Jeff says we can reckon on there being at least fifty people there tonight.

Ring back = return a phone call
Example: I phoned and left a message this morning but she still hasn’t called me back.

Ring off = finish a phone conversation
Example: Dave rang offguiltily when he saw his boss coming.

Ring up = telephone
Example: Helen rang up earlier.

Rip off =charge excessively or obtain money unfairly
Example: Tourists get ripped offa lot when they don’t speak the language.

Round off =finish something in a satisfactory manner
Example: Winning the FA Cup rounded offa wonderful season for Arsenal.

Rule out = exclude
Example: The Government quickly ruled out the possibility of a relaxation of the law.

Run away = Escape from people chasing you
Example: He ran away from his attackers.

Run down = hit a pedestrian with a vehicle
Example: The minicab ran him down on the zebra crossing.

Run down = lose energy or power
Example: You should only recharge the battery when it has fully run dawn.

Run into = cost
Example: The project has run into millions of dollars without any prospect of a return on this investment.

Run into = meet by accident
Example: I ran into James in a bar in the City on Friday.

Run off = make photocopies
Example: Could you run off two hundred copies of this report, please.

Run on = bepowered by
Example: The van runs on diesel.

Runoutof= havenoneleft
Example: We’ve run out ofsugar, I’m going to the shops for some.

Run over =explain quickly
Example: Could you run over that point again, I’m afraid I didn’t quite understand it.

Run over = hit with a vehicle
Example: The driver couldn’t stop in time and ran the fox over when it ran in front of his car.

Run through =practise a dramatic work like a play quickly
Example: The cast ran through the play the day before it opened to the public.

Run through = stab or wound deeply with a etc.
Example: The musketeer ran his enemy through with a sword and killed him.

S

Save up = for money for a particular purpose
Example: He’s saving up to buy a car.

Scare off = make someone so frightened that he or she away
Example: The vicious Doberman guard-dog scared the burglars away.

Screw up =do badly orfail
Example: David screwed up his oral exam but still managed to scrape a pass.

Screw up =make a ruin
Example: He screwed up the whole project and lost his job.

See into =accompany someone into an office
Example: Her secretary saw me into her office.

See off = chase s01nebody or sO’l’nCthing away
Example: A cat came into the back garden but the dog soon saw it off.

See off = go to the airport, to saygoodbye to someone
Example: I went to the station to see them off.

See out = accompany a guest to your front door when they are leaving your house
Example: They had a lot of difficulties in implementing the project, but the team saw it through successfully.

See through = realise someone is lying or being deceitful
Example: The police quickly saw through her disguise and arrested her.

See to = deal with something
Example: He saw to the arrangements and everything ran smoothly and efficiently.

Sell out = have no more ofsomething left because it has been bought
Example: The tickets for the Primal Scream concert at the Brixton Academy sold out in a couple of hours.

Sell out = lose all artistic integrity in return for commercial success
Example: Most bands sell out when they sign to a major record label and forget all their principles when pursuing chart success.

Sell out = sell all available tickets
Example: The concert completely sold out months in advance.

Send back = return something
Example: I sent my food back because it was overcooked.

Send for = ask someone to come and help
Example: I had to send for a plumber because the radiator was leaking.

Send in = order people into a place to handle a problem
Example: Are you sure you’re going? I’ll get your coats and see you out.

See through = continue with something to the end
Example: The police were sent in to quell the riot as the protesters had started burning cars and wrecking shops.

Send in = write to get information
Example: If you want to enter the competition, you have to send in for an entry form.

Send off = expel a sports player from a match
Example: The football striker was sent off for arguing with the referee’s decision.

Send off = post a letter
Example: I must send this letter off today otherwise it won’t get there in time.

Send offfor = order something by post
Example: I sent offfor some jeans that I liked in the catalogue.

Send out = send something to a lot of people
Example: They sent out a mail shot to all their existing customers.

Send out for = order takeaway food by phone
Example: We couldn’t be bothered to cook, so we sent out for a pizza.

Set about = start doing something
Example: We set about the cleaning and got it done before lunch time.

Set aside = overturn a court verdict or decision
Example: The Appeal Court set aside the guilty verdict because the evidence was unsatisfactory and declared her not guilty.

Set back = cost
Example: The car repairs set me back eight hundred pounds.

Set in = change season noticeably
Example: Winter has set in, it’s started snowing.

Set off = explode a bomb
Example: Terrorists set off a car bomb in the city centre last night. Fortunately, no one was hurt or killed.

Set off = ring an alarm
Example: The smoke set the fire alarm off.

Set off = start a journey
Example: We set off for work at seven-thirty.

Set out = display, show
Example: The figures are set out in the council’s annual report.

Set out = start a journey
Example: The explorers set out for the South Pole yesterday morning.

Set up = prepare equipment, software, etc., for use
Example: The technician set up the computer network perfectly.

Set up = start a company
Example: They set up a dot com company and floated it a couple of years later on the Stock Exchange and made an absolute fortune.

Settle down = start living a fixed and routine life
Example: After years of partying and drinking, she finally got married and settled down.

Settle in = get used to
Example: It took him a while to fettle in when he moved to Japan.

Settle on = agree
Example: They couldn’t agree at first on a name for their daugh- ter, but fmally settled on Alice.

Sex up = change information to make it more attractive to the readerlistener
Example: The government denied that they had sexed up the report to make the front page.

Shake off = get rid ofan illness
Example: It took me ages to shake offthe cough.

Shoot off = leave promptly and quickly
Example: I’ll have to shoot offas soon as the lesson ftnishes, otherwise I’ll miss my train.

Shoot up = increase quickly
Example: The share prices of internet companies have been shooting up lately.

Shop around = look around for the best price, quality, etc.
Example: If you shop around, you can fmd some real bargains for air tickets.

Show in = take someone into an office
Example: The secretary showed me in to speak to the manager.

Show off = behave in a way so as to attract attention
Example: The children were showing offand irritated me.

Shut down = close a business, shop, etc.
Example: The shop shut down when the out-of-town supermarket opened.

Shut down = turn a computer off
Example: You should close all programs before you shut a computer down.

Side with = support someone
Example: The lecturer sided with her students and got sacked for.

Sift through = examine a lot ofthings carefully
Example: We had to sift through thousands of files before we found what we were looking for.

Sink in = slowly come to be understood
Example: The truth fmally sank in about her death when it was broadcast on Tv.

Sit around = sit idly, doing nothing
Example: They just sat around while the others did all the work.

Sit in = occupy a building to protest about something
Example: The students sat in the Library as a protest against the increase in tuition fees.

Sit on = be on a cmnmittee
Example: She’s sat on the fmance committee from the beginning.

Sit throueh = stay till the end ofsomething dull
Example: I was bored and wanted to leave halfway through, but we sat through the film.

Slag off = criticise heavily
Example: The concert was terrible and all the papers slagged the band off.

Sleep off = sleep in order to recoverfrom excess alcohol, druos, etc.
Example: She went to bed to sleep off the effects of the tequila.

Sleep on = think about something
Example: My boss said she’d have to sleep on it when I asked her for a raise.

Sleep over = spend the night at someone else’s house
Example: The au pair made tea for the friends who were sleeping over.

Sleep through = not wake up
Example: I slept through the storm even though the wind blew some slates off the roof.

Slip out = leave discreetly
Example: The party was really dull so we slipped out and went to the pub instead.

Slip up =make an error
Example: The waitress slipped up and didn’t bring us what we had ordered.

Sober up = stop showing the effects ofalcohol or drugs
Example: Keith sobered up a bit when we left the pub and walked home.

Soldier on =continue even when thingsget difficult
Example: Life got hard for my dog when he went blind, but he just soldiered on and never complained.

Sort out = resolve a problem
Example: Has the firm sorted out its tax problems yet?

Sort out = solve a problem
Example: There were a lot of problems at first, but they’ve all been sorted out now.

Sound out = check what someone thinks about an etc.
Example: You should sound her out to get her opinion before you go ahead with the plan.

Spark off =cause usually unpleasan; to happen
Example: The riot was sparked offby the police raid on the club.

Speak out = talk openly and freely
Example: People are afraid to speak out in oppressive political regimes.

Speak up = Talk more loudly
Example: They couldn’t hear the speaker and asked him to speak up a bit.

Split up = divide into groups
Example: The teacher split the class up into groups of four.

Sptit up =finish a relationship
Example: They are always splitting up and then getting back to- gether again.

Spur on = encourage someone to continue
Example: The thought of the bonus spurred her on to complete the work on time.

Squeeze up = get more people into a space than normal or comfortable
Example: Four of us had to squeeze up in the back of the car.

Stand by = support someone
Example: He stood by her throughout the trial as he believed her to be innocent.

Stand for = accept or tolerate behaviour
Example: I’m not going to stand for their rudeness any longer.

Stand for = the words represented by certain initials
Example: ‘WHA T do the letters BBC stand for? ‘ ‘British Broad-casting Corporation.’

Stand in for = substitute someone temporarily
Example: She had to stand in for the editor while he was on holiday.

Stand out = be extraordinary and different
Example: She stood out from the crowd in selection and was offered the job.

Start up = open a business
Example: The firm started up on a shoestring budget.

Stay in = not go out
Example: I’m going to stay in and chill tonight, I can’t be bothered to go out.

Stay on = remain longer than anticipated
Example: She stayed on after she graduated to do a Master’s degree.

Stay out = notgo home
Example: We stayed out all night.

Stay up =notgo to bed
Example: The children stayed up until way past their bedtime.

Steer clear of = avoid
Example: He’s trying to steer clear ofhis lecturer because he hasn’t finished his assignment yet.

Step in = get involved by interrupting something
Example: I had to step in when they started fighting.

Step up = increase
Example: The police have stepped up the pressure on beggars work- ing the Underground.

Stick to = not change
Example: The Prime Minister decided to stick to the original plan despite the criticism in the media.

Stir up = make trouble for someone else
Example: He stirred things up by complaining to senior management about his line manager.

Stop off = break a journey
Example: We stopped offfor lunch about halfway there, then carried on driving.

Stub out =extinguish a cigarette
Example: He stubbed his cigarette out in a saucer because he couldn’t fmd an ashtray.

Sum up = summarise
Example: At the end of the lecture, she summed up the main points again.

Summon up = get the energy or courage to do something
Example: Andrea couldn’t summon up the enthusiasm to apply for the position.

Suss out = come to understand
Example: It took her ages to suss out what was going on.

T

Take after = look like, resemble
Example: He takes after his mother.

Take apart = take something to pieces
Example: She took the photocopier apart to see what had got stuck in it.

Take aside = get someone alone to talk to them
Example: The teacher took her aside and said that she’d failed the exam.

Take back = make someone nostalgic
Example: That song always takes me back to when I was at university.

Take back =retract a admit that something was wrong
Example: I had to take back everything bad I’d said about them when I learned how they’d helped out.

Take down = make notes or write down in full
Example: The police took down his answers to their questions.

Take down = remove
Example: People take down their Christmas decorations twelve days after Christmas.

Take in = absorb information
Example: The lecture was rather boring and I didn’t take in much of what the lecturer said.

Take in = deceive
Example: Nobody was taken in by her unbelievable excuse.

Take in = make clothes smaller
Example: The jacket was far too big around the shoulders, so I had it taken in so that I could wear it.

Take it out on = abuse someone because you’re angry
Example: Whenever things go wrong, he always shouts and takes it out on me, even if I had nothing to do with the problem.

Take off = makegreat progress
Example: The software house really took offwhen they produced the latest version of their DTP package.

Take off = reduce the price ofan item
Example: They’ve taken ten percent offdesigner frames for glasses.

Take off = when a plane departs or leaves the ground
Example: The flight for Dublin took offon time.

Take on = allow passengers on a ship or aeroplane
Example: The plane stopped at Zurich to take on some passengers.

Take on = assume tf, responsibility
Example: She took on the task of indexing the book.

Take on = employ
Example: The council has had to take on twenty extra employees to handle their increased workload.

Take out = borrow a library book
Example: I took out all the books I needed for my essay from the library.

Take out = borrow money from a bank or other official lender
Example: Jackie and Anil took out a mortgage to buy a bigger flat.

Take out = extract or remove
Example: The dentist took out all of my wisdom teeth before they started causing any problems.

Take out = go out socially with someone, especially a date
Example: He took her out to a restaurant last Friday night.

Take out = obtain insurance
Example: I took out some health insurance before I went back- packing around Latin America.

Take over = assume control ofa company or organisation
Example: The bank was taken aver by a Hong Kong bank that needed to buy a bank to get into the British market.

Take to = make a habit of something
Example: He’s taken to wearing a baseball cap since his hair started thinning more noticeably.

Take up = fill or occupy time or space
Example: An awful lot of my time at work is taken up with pointless bureaucracy nowadays.

Take up = make clothes shorter
Example: The trousers were too long so I took them up to make them fit.

Take up = start a new etc.
Example: He took up squash as he felt he had to lose some weight.

Talk into =persuade someone to do something
Example: She didn’t want to let me go, but I finally managed to talk her into it.

Talk out of = persuade someone not to do something
Example: He was going to drive home after drinking half a bottle of wine, but his friends talked him out ofit.

Tear apart = disturb or upsetgreatly
Example: People were torn apart when news of the train crash came through.

Tear down =demolish
Example: The estate was torn down so that they could develop the land into luxury flats.

Tear off = remove part ofa form or letter using your hands and not scissors
Example: She tore the slip off the bottom of the form and sent it with her cheque.

Tear up =rip into pieces
Example: He tore the fax up and threw the bits of paper in the bin.

Tell apart =see a difference between two things
Example: They’re identical twins so I cannot tell them apart.

Tell off = chide, talk angrily to someone about something they’ve done wrong.
Example: His fiancee told him offfor arriving nearly an hour late.

Think over = consider something carefully
Example: I’ve thought it over and have made up my mind, I’m going to take the job in Leeds.

Think through = consider all the possibilities and outcomes ofa situation
Example: The plan fell through because they hadn’t thought it through properly.

Throwaway = discard something when no longer needed
Example: I threw the alarm clock away because it had stopped working.

Throw out = get rid of
Example: I threw out all myoId clothes to make some space in my wardrobe.

Throw up = vomit
Example: The prawns she ate at lunch made her throw up and she had to go home early.

Tide over = use something carefully so as not to finish it
Example: This £50 will have to tide me over until I get paid.

Tidy up =put things in the correctplace in a room
Example: I tidied up my bedroom because it was a complete mess.

Tire of =get bored ofsomething
Example: She soon tired ofthe course and dropped out.

Tone down = make something sound more moderate
Example: The Minister tried to tone down what she had said when the press started attacking her.

Top off = finish something in a special way
Example: He complained for an hour and to top it offstarted shouting his head off.

Top up = refill something that isn/t empty yet
Example: Shall I top up your drink while I’m pouring myseff one?

Track down =find after a long search
Example: It took me ages to track them down in the crowd at the football game.

Trade in = exchange something old as part of the price of something new
Example: She traded in her old car for the new model.

Trade off = make a deal or compromise
Example: A longer working week was traded offfor a pay rise.

Trade up = buy lat:!Jer or more expensive items
Example: British wine drinkers have traded up over the last few years from cheap plonk to expensive wines.

Tryon =put clothes on to see if they fit
Example: I tried the jacket art before I bought it.

Try out =test
Example: Scientists are trying out a new drug in the fight against the disease.

Turn against = stop liking and start disliking
Example: The public turned against the government when they became arrogant and ceased to listen.

Turn away = not allow someone to enter a place
Example: The doorman turned him away from the nightclub because he was wearing trainers.

Turn down = reduce volume, temperature, etc.
Example: The room was too hot, so she turned the heating down.

Turn down = reject an offer, invitation, etc.
Example: They offered her the job, but she turned it down.

Turn in =go to bed
Example: I turned in at half past eleven because I had an early start the next morning.

Turn into = become
Example: Tadpoles turn into frogs.

Turn on = cause someone to feel attraction or pleasure
Example: He really turns me on.

Turn on = start a machine
Example: I turned the radio on to get the weather forecast.

Turn out = produce
Example: The factory turns out three thousand units a day.

Turn out = produce an unexpected result
Example: It looked as if we were going to fail, but it turned out well in the end.

Turn out = stop a light
Example: She turned out the lights and went to bed.

Turn to = try toget help
Example: She had nobody to turn to when her husband died.

Turn up = appear
Example: She didn’t turn up for class today.

Turn up = increase volume, temperature, etc.
Example: I turned the music up full blast.

Type up = type a finished version
Example: She typed up her lecture notes and printed them out.

U

Use up = finish or consume all ofsomething
Example: We used up all the olive oil.

W

Wake up = stop sleeping
Example: I woke up at half past six this morning.

Wallk on = continue walking
Example: I saw the accident but just walked on as I didn’t want to have to give a statement.

Walk out on = leave somebody angrily
Example: He walked out on his wife last year.

Want out = want to leave a relationship or arrangement
Example: Jackie wanted out of her marriage.

Warm up = do exercises before a sport
Example: The team warmed up half an hour before the volleyball match.

Wash away = when floods or waves completely remove a structure, building, etc.
Example: The ice cream stall on the beach was washed away in the storm last night.

Wash up =clean everything used to preparefood and eat it
Example: The children washed up after lunch.

Watch over = keep an eye on something or someone to check that there’s no trouble
Example: The lecmrer watched over the smdents as they did the experiment.

Water down = make something weaker and less effective
Example: The Freedom of Information Act was watered down by the Government and didn’t give ordinary people much access to official data flies

Wear away = erode, removegradually
Example: The lawn has been worn away by people walking across it and it’s just bare soil now with hardly a blade of grass.

Wear down = make something weaker
Example: The stress of my job is wearing me down.

Wear off = stop having an effict
Example: The anaesthetic wore off and my tooth started hurting.

Wear out = use something until it stops working
Example: She played the video so many times that she wore the tape out.

Whip out = remove quickly
Example: The police officer whipped out her radio and called for back-up.

Wimp out = not be brave enough to do something
Example: I was going to have the hottest curry on the menu, but I wimped out and had a mild lamb Korma instead.

Wind down = relax
Example: I’m going to wind down in the country this weekend and do nothing.

Wind up = close a company because it’s unprofitable
Example: The company was wound up when the creditors demanded payment.

Wire up = make electrical connections
Example: She wired her new stereo system up as soon as she got home.

Wise up = stop being stupid
Example: His supervisor told him to wise up and start following the rules or else he’d lose his job.

Work off = exercise to remove stress or weight
Example: She goes to the gym to work off her anger.

Work on = improve or develop
Example: Scientists are working on genetically modified crops and foods.

Work out = end nicely
Example: Things were going wrong for them but fortunately it all worked out in the end.

Work out = find the answer or solution
Example: I couldn’t work out all the answers to the crossword puzzle.

urap up = cover in paper
Example: They wrapped up the presents then put a ribbon around them.

Wrap up =dress warmly
Example: u+ap up carefully or you’ll catch your death of cold out- side in that rain.

Write down = make notes
Example: I wrote her mobile number down on a scrap of paper and I’ve lost it.

Write in = send a letter to a TV etc.
Example: They asked viewers to write in with their opinions and suggestions.

Write off = destroy a car in an accident
Example: He wrote the car offin an accident on the motorway.

Y

Yield to = surrender
Example: I tried hard to resist, but in the end I yielded to temptation and ate it all.

Z

Zoom in = focus more closely
Example: The camera zoomed in on his face.

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