What are phrasal verbs?
Phrasal verbs are verbs that consist of a verb and a particle. If you don’t know the meaning of a word, just look it up in your dictionary.
- VERB: look
- UP: particle
Particles are small words which you already know as prepositions or adverbs. Here are some of the most common phrasal verb particles: about, at, on, up, through, to, off, into, in, for, down, back, away, around, about.
It is enough for the students to just know the meaning of a verb, for if a particle is added to the verb, then the meaning changes. Therefore, the first thing the student needs to know is the meaning of the whole phrasal verb unit. For example, the verb “look” means to use one’s eyes and “up” means the opposite of “down”. But the phrasal verb “look up” can mean 3 different meanings:
- Look up a word in a dictionary (to search for its meaning).
- Things are at last looking up (things are at last improving).
Second, the student needs to know the grammar patterns of phrasal verbs, that is, whether the verb takes an object.
Common Phrasal Verbs
The verb is used without an object, and it means to eat outside.
- Last night, we decided to eat out as we were too tired to cook at home.
The verb must have a non-human object, and one of its meanings is to think about something from the past.
- The picture brings back good memories (makes me remember something from the past).
The verb must have a human object, and it means to invite someone to a place.
- You have to ask her out if you want to get closer to her.
This phrasal verb means to take care of someone or something, and the object can be either human or non-human.
- My mother always looks after my sister’s baby. (the object is human = my sister’s baby).
- I will look after your bike while you’re away. (the object is non-human = your bike).
It means to call someone who called you earlier or to call someone a second call. The object must come before the particle.
- I’ll ring you back as soon as I get back home. (the object = you comes before the particle = back).
The phrasal verb means to take people, goods, mail, etc. to a place, and the object can be before or after the particle.
- The postman dropped off a package at your house this morning. (the object is after the particle)
- The postman dropped a package off at your house this morning. (the object is before the particle)
Phrasal Verbs Quiz
Choose the right phrasal verb to complete these sentences. Don't forget to share your score in the comments!
You can try our other quizes here.
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