Phrasal Verbs Beginning with “A”

This page contains an extensive list of phrasal verbs beginning with "A". Click one of the letters below for a list of phrasal verbs, definitions, and examples starting with another letter.


A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z


Abide (1)

Abide by

definition: (Inseparable) To follow a rule, decision or instruction

example: Everybody must abide by the law.

Account (1)

Account for

definition: (Inseparable) To explain the reason for something

example: There are more police in the streets to account for the increase in crime.

Ache (1)

Ache for

definition: (Inseparable) To want something or someone a lot

example: I'm really aching for a nice hot shower!

Act (4)

Act on

definition 1: (Inseparable) To take action because of something like information received

example: We must act on the government's decision before stock prices fall.


definition 2: (Intransitive) To affect something

example: The President's foreign policy only acts on certain EU countries.

Act out

definition 1: (Separable [optional]) To perform something with a series of gestures or actions

example: The actor acted out his role very well in the film.


definition 2: (Separable [optional]) To express emotion or behaviour

example: The protestors acted out their displeasure with the government by inciting a riot .

Act up

definition: (Intransitive) To behave badly or strangely

example: My phone is acting up again. I think I need to buy a new one.

Act upon

definition 1: (Inseparable) To take action because of information or an event

example: They were acting upon the pretext that they had already won the lottery.


definition 2: (Inseparable) To affect something

example: Consumer spending acts upon market growth.

Add (3)

Add on

definition: (Separable [optional]) To include in a calculation

example: You have to add the tax on the price.

Add up

definition 1: (Separable [optional]) To make a mathematical sum

example: We still need to add last months sales figures up.


definition 2: (Intransitive) To make sense of or to seem reasonable

example: The witness testimony and evidence just don't add up.

Add up to

definition 1: (Inseparable) To have a certain result

example: Three kids, two dogs, and a hand full of cookies adds up to hell in a hand basket.


definition 2: (Inseparable) To reach a certain amount

example: Our bill at the restaurant added up to £74.16.

Advise (1)

Advise against

definition: (Inseparable) To suggest or recommend that doing something is not a good idea

example: The attorney agent advised Lisa and Tom against taking legal action.

Agree (1)

Agree with

definition: (Inseparable) To share the same opinion as someone

example: I agree with Karen, this office is too small.

Allow (2)

Allow for

definition: (Inseparable) To take into consideration

example: We should overestimate the budget in order to allow for unforeseen complications.

Allow of

definition: (Inseparable) To make possible, to permit

example: The evidence submitted allows of only one possibility.

Angle (1)

Angle for

definition: (Inseparable) To try getting something indirectly, by hinting or suggesting

example: Fred has been angling for a pay raise but I don't think he deserves one.

Answer (2)

Answer back

definition: (Separable [obligatory]) To reply rudely to someone in authority

example: Sam isn't very well behaved, he always answers back to his parents.

Answer for

definition 1: (Inseparable) To be held accountable for something

example: Banks should answer for the housing bubble which caused the financial crisis.


definition 2: (Inseparable) To speak on behalf of someone or for knowing them

example: Tom answered for Cindy because they had similar views on the matter.

Argue (2)

Argue down

definition 1: (Separable [obligatory])To beat someone in a argument, debate, or discussion

example: He clearly argued the rest of the candidates down.


definition 2: (Separable [optional]) To convince someone to lower the price of an item they are selling

example: I argued the seller down to fifteen percent of the original price.


definition 3: (Separable [optional]) To try and convince someone not to accept a proposal or motion

example: We argued down the contractor's offer.

Argue out

definition : (Separable [optional]) To argue about a problem in order to find a solution

example: They tried to argue out their differences instead of going to court.

Appeal (1)

Appeal to

definition 1: (Separable [optional]) To make a serious, urgent or heartfelt request

example: Stephan said that he is going to appeal to a higher court for a different verdict.


definition 2: (Separable [optional]) To be liked by someone

example: Satire is the type of humour that appeals to me the most.

Apply (1)

Apply for

definition: (Separable [optional]) To formally make a request for something (ie: a job, school, a loan)

example: Richard has applied for a new job.

Ask (8)

Ask about

definition: (Inseparable) To ask how someone is doing, particularly in terms of health

example: She asked about my wife and kids.

Ask after

definition: (Inseparable) To ask about someone's health and how things are going in life

example: He phoned to ask after Lindsey, so I told him she was doing well.

Ask around

definition: (Intransitive) To ask a number of people for information or help

example: I'll ask around the office tomorrow, maybe someone has seen your phone.

Ask for

definition 1: (Inseparable) To make a request for something

example: He asked for her phone number.


definition 2: (Inseparable) To provoke a negative reaction

example: You're asking for trouble wearing that in this neighbourhood.

Ask in

definition: (Separable [obligatory]) To invite someone to come into your house

example: A: Frank's outside. B:Why don't you ask him in?

Ask out

definition: (Separable [obligatory]) To invite someone on a date

example: Greg asked Sarah out on Friday.

Ask over

definition: (Separable [optional]) To invite someone

example: Tony asked us over to his barbecue on Saturday.

Ask round

definition: (Separable [obligatory]) To invite someone

example: We asked Tom and Hedia round for dinner.

Auction (1)

Auction off

definition: (Separable [optional]) To sell something to the highest bidder at an auction

example: Christie's auctioned one of Jimmy Hendrix's guitars off for $100,000.


Phrasal Verb Dictionary

Click one of the letters below for a list of phrasal verbs, definitions, and examples starting with another letter.


A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z