A phrasal verb is made up of a verb + a short word (up, off, in, etc.).
There and many phrasal verbs in English, but you don’t need to know them all! Here are 10 important phrasal verbs for elementary learners of English to start with.
definition: to stop sleeping
irregular verb: wake, woke, woken
- I wake up at 6 o’clock every morning.
- I woke up at 7 o’clock yesterday morning.
definition: to get out of bed
irregular verb: get, got, got (US English gotten)
- I always wake up at 6.30 and then I get up at 6.40.
- I got up late yesterday.
definition: to speak more loudly
irregular verb: speak, spoke, spoken
- Speak up, please! I can’t hear you.
definition: to go more quickly
- We are late. Hurry up!
- You’re so slow. Please hurry up!
definition: to stop a habit
irregular verb: give, gave, given
- I want to give up smoking; it’s unhealthy and expensive.
- I gave up smoking last year. I feel much healthier now.
definition: to wash the plates, cups and cutlery
- My wife cooked the dinner and afterwards I washed up.
definition: to go more slowly
- Don’t drive so quickly – slow down!
- You’re speaking too quickly. Please slow down!
definition: when a car or machine stops working
irregular verb: break, broke, broken
- Old cars often break down.
- My car broke down yesterday and I was late for work.
definition: to be careful, to pay attention
- Look out! The floor is wet.
definition: to stop being a child, become an adult
irregular verb: grow, grew, grown
- My daughter is growing up fast.
- He grew up in London but now he lives in Paris.
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