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Lexique de ‘Phrasal Verbs’ de A au G

Les verbes qui se servent de plusieurs mots

'A' Phrasal Verbs

To add upto calculate a sum; to make sense 

Ex1: added up all the money our clients owe us and it’s more than 20,000 €!
Ex2: He said he had to go to Paris urgently but I saw him an hour ago in the car park; it doesn’t add up

To ask out :  to invite somebody on a date  

Ex: He asked her out but she said no because they work in the same department.

'B' Phrasal Verbs


A-D | E-H |

To back down:  to withdraw a claim, demand or commitment made everywhere 

Ex: The government announced increased taxation for next year but they backed down when people protested in the streets

To back up: to support (1)  

Ex: When John asked the finance department for a bigger budget, his team backed him up by confirming more money was needed to complete the project on time.

To back up: to make a copy of a computer file (2) 

Ex2: His computer crashed and as he hadn’t backed up any of his files, he lost everything!

To back out of : to withdraw from an enterprise or business deal 

Ex: We were ready to sign but we backed out of the merger following a news report on bribery in their company.

To break down:   to stop working properly

Ex: His car broke down on the way to the airport so he missed his flight.

To break into:  to enter by force

Ex: Somebody broke into the company and stole four laptops

To break up:  to end a relationship (1)

Ex: Andy and Betty broke up when she accepted a job in New York and left London

To break up:  to disperse a crowd (2)

Ex: The police broke up the protesters after they received complaints about the noise

To bring up : to raise

Ex: Many people prefer to bring their children up in the countryside instead of in a big city.

To bring off:  to do something difficult successfully

Ex: ‘If you bring off this deal, you’ll get a huge bonus at the end of the year!’

To bring about:  to cause something to happen

Ex: His recent health scare brought about a huge change in his attitude – he’s much nicer than he used to be

To bring back:  to re-introduce

Ex: People are worried that the government will bring back higher taxes

To bring down:  to lower; to destroy / remove from power

Ex1: Following months of protests, the government promised to bring down the taxes next year.

Ex2: The economic crisis brought down the government and elections will take place next month

To bring out:   to produce and place on the market

Ex1: ‘Don’t change your car yet – Peugeot are bringing out a new model in six months’

 To bring around: to persuade

Ex1:  ‘Although my manager didn’t like my proposal at first, I managed to bring her round and now she loves it!’

To buy out:   to purchase the ownership or controlling shares of a company

Ex: Multinational companies can buy out the shareholders of smaller companies

To buy up:   to purchase all that is available of something (FR: acheter en bloc rafler)

Ex: After the farmers announced a month – long strike, people started buying up as many vegetables as they could find

 To buy into:   to believe that an idea is valid because other people believe it

Ex: Everybody bought into the idea of trying to a make a huge profit quickly and easily

'C' Phrasal Verbs

To call for:  require

Ex: The current crisis calls for strong leadership (1)

To call for: to demand that something happen (2)

Ex: Following reports of financial scandals, the newspapers called for the Minister’s resignation

To call off:  to cancel

Ex: The meeting was called off as most people were unable to attend due to the bad weather

To call up:  to telephone

Ex: I called him up and invited him  to dinner

To carry out:  to do a particular piece of work or research

Ex: The building work was carried out by a very good construction company

To carry over:  to take something from one period of time into the next one

Ex: Any holiday allowance not used this year can be carried over into the next year

To catch on:  to become popular or fashionable

Ex: The company launched a range of organic meals which quickly caught on as more and more people are trying to eat healthily

To catch up with:  to move faster in order to reach the person / vehicle in front of you

Ex: He stopped to buy a bottle of water and caught up with them later

To catch up on:   to do something that should have been before

Ex: I’ve been on holiday for three weeks so I have to catch up on a lot of work

To check in:   to arrive at a hotel or hospital and give your details to the receptionist (1)

Ex: The hotel reception is open 24 hours so we can check in late at night

To check in:   to arrive at an airport and show your ticket to the person at the airline counter (2)

Ex: You must check in at least 50 minutes before your flight

To check off:  to put a ✓ next to something on a list to show that you have done it

Ex: I always check off every task I complete so that I don’t forget anything

To check on somebody:  to make sure somebody is safe or okay

Ex: The team leader checked on the new employee to see if he needed any help

To check out: to return the key of your hotel room to reception at the end of your stay (1)

Ex: We have to check out before 11 am or we will be charged for an extra day

 To check out:  to investigate something or somebody (2)

Ex2: There have been complaints regarding late deliveries so we need to check out the delivery system to find the problem

 To check with somebody:  to ask for confirmation

Ex: I think we can postpone the meeting for tomorrow but I need to check with my manager first 

To come out:  to be published

Ex1:  The audit company said that the result of this years’ audit will come out next week

To come up:  to happen unexpectedly (usually a problem)

Ex: His business trip was cancelled because something came up in the factory and he had to stay to fix it

To come between:  to separate, to act as a barrier

Ex: He watches all the PSG matches – nothing can come between him and football

To come off:  to succeed

Ex: Jane’s plans to open a Bed & Breakfast came off and she’s now making a lot of money!

To cut down on something:  to reduce the quantity

Ex: If you want to lose weight you should cut down on fried food

To cut in:  to interrupt somebody while they are talking

Ex: ‘If I can I just cut in here, there is something important you should know’

To cut up:  to cut something like fabric or paper into pieces

Ex: You should cut up your credit card when it expires

'D' Phrasal Verbs

To do away with:  to stop something completely – to abolish

Ex: Most schools did away with uniforms years ago

To do up:  to renovate or completely change (1)

Ex: the offices need doing up because they are very old-fashioned

To do up:  to fasten (2)

Ex: I always do up my jacket before leaving the house in winter

To do without:  to manage without something

Ex: We had no coffee and as the shops were closed we just had to do without for the evening

To drive at:   to mean

Ex: It was obvious that he was driving at getting a bonus

To drive away:   to make someone leave

Ex:  Despite the good food, the rude and inefficient staff drove customers away from the restaurant

To drive up:   to cause to increase

Ex: rumours of a merger drove up the price of the company’s shares

To drop in:  to visit someone unannounced

Ex:  Jim was in Toulouse for business and he dropped in to see his cousin which was a lovely surprise

To drop out:  to quit school or university before graduating

Ex: He dropped out of university to get a job and make money and now he owns three restaurants

To drop off:  to take someone to a place by car and leave them there (1)

Ex: I dropped him off at the airport on my way home

To drop off:  to become fewer / less (2)

Ex: Air-conditioning sales dropped off in the winter months

'F' Phrasal Verbs

To fall back on:  to do or use something after other things have failed

Ex:‘When the shop started doing badly and the banks refused to give them a loan, the owners fell back on their savings

To fall behind:  to not make as much progress as other people

Ex: Construction work fell behind because of the builders’ strike

To fall off:  to separate from something and fall to the ground; to decrease in size or number

Ex1: He was laughing so hard, he fell off his chair

Ex2: The economic crisis caused sales to fall off

To fall through:  to fail to happen

Ex: The deal fell through because the two client didn’t accept the new, higher prices the supplier charged

To fall out with to:  have an argument with someone

Ex: The two business partners fell out with each other and spoke to each other only when absolutely necessary

To fill in:  to complete a form

Ex: You need to fill in this form to apply for a passport

To fill in for:  to replace someone (at work)

Ex: A temporary employee fills in for the receptionist when she goes on holiday

To fill in on:  to update someone

Ex: I filled him in on what was decided at the meeting yesterday as he was absent

To fill up:  to make something full

Ex: I filled up my water bottle this morning

'G' Phrasal Verbs

To get away with:  to do something wrong without being caught

Ex: He gave our competitors inside information for years and he almost got away with it!

To get by:  to manage financially

Ex: I wonder how Jim is getting by now that he has lost his job

To get down to:  to give serious attention to something

Ex: My holiday in Australia was fantastic but it’s hard to get down to work after a month away from the office

To get on: to manage

Ex: The new guy in the accounting department is getting on very well despite his lack of experience

To get out of:  to avoid a responsibility

Ex:  I need to cancel lunch with my friend because I have a meeting I can’t get out of

To get over:  to recover

A: Tom is still absent as he needs time to get over the flu

To get through:  to successfully complete something

Ex:  Jane got through her final exams last week so she’s feeling relieved!

To give in:  to agree to so something you do not want to do; to be defeated

Ex: Following a lot of pressure by the trade unions, the CEO gave in and gave the employees a bonus

To give away:  to offer something for free

Ex: She decided to give away the clothes she didn’t need any longer

To give away:  to reveal secrets

Ex: ‘Be careful you don’t give away any company secrets when talking to our competitors!’

To give back:  to return something to its owner

Ex: ‘You can borrow my book but make sure you give it back when you finish reading it’.

To go on:  to happen; to continue; to pass (for time); to go in advance; to complain

Ex1: I wonder what’s going on outside…it’s very noisy!

Ex2: We had to go on working despite the noise from the building next door

Ex3: As time went on, we all started feeling bored listening to him talk

Ex4:  I need to finish this email so you go on and I’ll meet you at the canteen

Ex5: Our manager is always going on at us about using too much paper

To go through:  to experience; to check; to spend / use; to not be completed / approved

Ex1: The company went through a massive restructuring last year which was very stressful for all the employees

Ex2: External auditors went through all the accounts to check the company’s finances

Ex3: We go through a packet of coffee every week as we all drink a lot of coffee

Ex4: A few projects were late and as a result a big business deal didn’t go through.

To go for:  to attack; to choose

Ex1: They fired Tim after he went for his manager when she told him she wasn’t happy with his work

Ex2: ‘I hear they interviewed two people for Tim’s position. Which candidate did they go for in the end?’

To go back on:  to break a promise

Ex: Despite promising to help me, my manager went back on his word and didn’t support my idea in the meeting so it was rejected