[English] List of Phrasal Verbs with Examples

phrasal verbs eduhyme

Phrasal verbs are very common in English, especially in more informal contexts. They are made up of a verb and a particle or, sometimes, two particles. The particle often changes the meaning of the verb. A phrasal verb has a meaning which is different from the original verb. That’s what makes them fun, but confusing. You may need to try to guess the meaning from the context, or, failing that, look it up in a dictionary.

Phrasal verbs are frequently used in spoken English as well as informal texts. You will also come across these in the verbal section of various competitive exams like SBI PO, SBI Clerk, LIC AAO, SSCCGL, SSC CPO, SSC CHSL, RRB JE, RRB ALP, etc.

As the name suggests, a phrasal verb is composed of two or three words, including a verb and an adverb or preposition. Generally, the meaning of the phrasal verb is not very obvious from the main verb.

1. Answer for: to be answerable for
Example: If one makes mistake then one should be ready to answer for it.

2. Ask after: to inquire about
Example: Jimmy had to contact branch office to ask after the delay in the process.

3. Attend on: to serve
Example: We should not forget to attend on our grandparents in their old age.

4. Back out: to choose not to do something agreed
Example: After his father had refused him, he backed out of picnic plan.

5. Back up: to support
Example: I couldn’t have solved this issue without your back up.

6. Bear down: to press down heavily
Example: The snow bore down on the roof.

7. Blow over: to pass without harming
Example: My headache finally blew over.

8. Bound for: going to a destination
Example: This train is bound for London.

9. Break down (of machinery) : to stop working
Example: Our car broke down on the way of Paris.

10. Break down: to lose control emotionally
Example: The old lady broke down when heard news of her son’s death.

11. Break into: to enter illegally
Example: Last night, some thieves broke into our neighbor’s house.

12. Break out: to start (of disease or war etc.)
Example: In Southern China, the swine flu has broken out.

13. Break up (of relationship) : to end/separate
Example: Alex and Alley broke up after 5 year’s long relationship.

14. Bring about: to cause to happen
Example: This injury on my hand brought about skin infection to my whole body.

15. Bring down: to reduce
Example: Carelessness in studies brings down the performance of student in exam.

16. Bring up: to raise, to rear
Example: After My parent’s death in an accident, I was brought up by my grandparents.

17. Call for: to demand
Example: The Company workers called for extra wages.

18. Call off: to cancel
Example: Due to heavy rainfall, we had to call off our picnic plan.

19. Call on: to pay a visit
Example: The Rural development minister calls on rural areas every month.

20. Call up: to recall
Example: Although Rosy is an atheist, she calls up God when in trouble.

21. Carry on: to continue
Example: After rain had stopped, we carried on our party on roof.

22. Carry out: to execute
Example: The Supervisor carried out all the instructions carefully given by Manager.

23. Catch up (with): to stop being behind
Example: Though Michael took admission in midsession, he caught up with his classmates in final exams.

24. Clear someone of: to free from blame
Example: The Court has cleared him of all the charges leveled against him.

25. Come about: to happen
Example: What came about last night? I had heard something.

26. Come across: to meet by chance
Example: Yesterday, while wandering in the market, I came across my old school friend.

Fill in the blanks with appropriate phrasal verbs and prepositions.

  1. Quick! ________ (ride) the bus. It’s ready to leave.
  2. I don’t know where my book is. I have to ________ (find something) it.
  3. It’s dark inside. Can you _______ (start something) the light, please?
  4. ________ (covering the blank space) the form, please.
  5. I need some new clothes. Why don’t you _________ (see fitting)?
  6. It’s warm inside. _______ (pull out) your coat.
  7. This pencil is really old. You can _____ ( hurl) it _______(far) .
  8. It’s so loud here. Can you ________ (slow down) the radio a little.
  9. The firemen were able to ________ (extinguish) the fire in Church Street.
  10. Does your little brother _________ (thinking of something in real) ghosts?
  11. He ______ (start) the light.
  12. I cannot ______ (to recognize) his writing.
  13. Please, ________ (moving on to the next page) the page.
  14. We cannot play football here. The sign says, “_______ (not to do) the grass.”
  15. She ______ (to feel sad) and cried.
  16. The boy was ________(upbringing) by a nanny.
  17. I can hardly concentrate. I have ______ (exhausted) doing excessive work.
  18. The Titanic collided with an iceberg and ______ ( to drown).
  19. Why don’t you _______(to continue) singing? You have such a beautiful voice.
  20. The strike was _______ (to quash) by military units.
  21. Would you like to _______ (start) business in the United States?
  22. I _______ (bring somebody along with you) my brother from the airport.
  23. The scientists ________ (to do something) an experiment in the laboratory.
  24. If you want to get reports, please ________ (begin to do something).
  25. We were talking about the weather and then she _______ (started to talk about) the election.
  26. This project _________ (is using a certain amount of space or time) far too much time.
  27. The repairs were _________ (done and finished a task) by a carpenter.
  28. Jai is going to _________ (take control of) the project.
  29. Why don’t you ________ (begin to do something) and have dinner? I’ll join you later.
  30. ________ (change from sleeping to being awake)! We need to go out!


  1. Get on
  2. look for
  3. switch on
  4. Fill in
  5. try on
  6. Take off
  7. throw, away
  8. turn down
  9. put out
  10. believe in
  11. turned on
  12. make out
  13. turn over
  14. Keep off
  15. broke down
  16. brought up
  17. burnt out
  18. went down
  19. carry on
  20. put down
  21. set up
  22. picked up
  23. carried out
  24. go ahead
  25. brought up
  26. is taking up
  27. carried out
  28. take over
  29. go ahead
  30. Wake up
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