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Updated: Aug 8, 2022

Phrasal verbs are verbs which consist of usually two or three words.

For example: find out, get up, come up with

These verbs work as a unit, and we should avoid translating them word by word. They have a complex meaning. Be careful about not only their meaning but also their form.

1) separable = we can separate the verb from the particle(s) and insert an object

for instance: pick up

using a pronoun: I will pick you up at 6 p.m. I will pick up you at 6 p.m.

using a noun: I will pick my son up at 6 p.m. I will pick up my son at 6 p.m.

using a name: I will pick Tom up at 6 p.m. I will pick up Tom at 6 p.m.

2) inseparable = we CANNOT separate the verb from the particle(s)

for instance: look forward to

I am looking forward to this summer and free travelling.

Daniel cannot keep up with the rest of the team.

3) transitive = these verbs need an object

Let’s call the meeting off. (It would not make sense to say just Let’s call off.)

4) intransitive = these verbs do not need an object; they make sense when they are used on their own.

Watch out! There is a car coming. Hurry up! We are late.

Please, go on.


break up with, deal with, cope with, catch up with, get away with, read up on, brush up on, turn up, turn down, drop out, follow up, put sb through

A more detailed list of phrasal verbs with their meanings can be downloaded here:






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