Unit 5.2

Phrasal Verbs

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A phrasal verb is a two-part verb formed by a verb and a particle. This particle usually gives verbs a whole new meaning.



phrasal verb has two parts: the first part is called the base, in which the verb is located; the second part consists of an adverb or a preposition that follows the base.

Sentences containing phrasal verbs usually have the following structures:
… + verb + object + preposition/adverb + …
… + verb + preposition/adverb + object + …

There are some rules:

  • some phrasal verbs are transitive, which means they must be followed by an object;
  • some phrasal verbs are intransitive, so they cannot be followed by an object;
  • while some of the phrasal verbs are separable and you can put the object in the middle of them, some are not, so you cannot put the object between the two parts.


The most common used phrasal verbs are: bring up, bring on, cut off, cut in, get away, getting along, falling down, fall apart, hang on, hang up…


  1. We need to bring the national trade topic up at the meeting.
  2. A lot of statements in her speech will surely bring on ambiguity and confusion in the Chamber of Commerce.
  3. The manager cut off the show to inform the audience.
  4. I was speaking to my professor but another boy cut in.
  5. The alarms prevented thieves from getting away from the bank.
  6. Mary and her husband have been getting along for years.
  7. The brown and maroon leaves were falling down.
  8. Couples eventually fall apart because of various disagreements.
  9. Hang on, I have a call from a businessman.
  10. She hung up the phone in the middle of the conversation without saying anything.


Phrasal verbs usually have a completely different meaning from the original verb. It is usually very difficult to understand their meaning from the words it is formed by.

Below you can see the meanings of some phrasal verbs:

  1. bring up: to mention a specific subject;
  2. bring on: to cause something to happen, mostly negative;
  3. cut off: to interrupt or stop something;
  4. cut in: to interrupt someone when they are speaking;
  5. get away: to escape;
  6. getting along: to have a friendly relationship with someone;
  7. falling down: to drop to the ground, generally by accident;
  8. fall apart: to break into pieces. However; we can use it to talk about things that are not physical like a marriage, situation or a person;
  9. hang on: to keep something;
  10. hung up: to end a phone call, especially when the other person doesn’t expect it.


Phrasal verbs are verbs formed by the combination of a verb and a particle. This particle usually gives verbs a whole new meaning.

The most common used phrasal verbs are: bring up, bring on, cut off, cut in, get away, getting along, falling down, fall apart, hang on, hang up…

For example:
“I hate it when people hung up without saying goodbye. It’s so rude!”
“He proposed that she quit her job and get away with him in an island.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

More exercises


External link to Phrasal Verbs exercises (159).

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