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53 Phrasal Verbs With UP

Phrasal Verbs With UP

One of the most difficult parts of learning English is studying phrasal verbs.. Do you find it easy to pick up (learn quickly) new phrasal verbs with "up"?

Do you sometimes get confused and screw up (make a mistake) when you use them? Well, cheer up (become happier) because this lesson will make your English sound more natural.


Phrasal verbs with "up"

Phrasal verbs with UP are the largest category of phrasal verbs in English


1. Act up: Behave badly.

  • I think I'll stand rather than sit because my hemorrhoids are acting up again.

2. Add up: Perform the process of calculating the total value of two or more numbers or amounts.

  • I've calculated that over and over, but it just doesn't add up.

3. Back up:

A: Provide support for someone or something.

    • His mother backed him on up everything.

B: Move or drive backwards.

    • She backed up until she found herself against the wall

C: To make a spare copy of data or a disk.

    • Please be sure to back up your files before you go home each day.

4. Ball up: To form into the shape of a ball.

  • He just balls everything up and throws it in a bag.

5. Beat up: To hurt someone by hitting and/or kicking them repeatedly.

  • The government supporters are beating up anyone they suspect of favouring the demonstrators.

6. Blow up

A: To become suddenly very angry.

  • He may blow up when he finds out how much I spent.

B: Explode.

  • The car blew up as soon as it hit the wall.

C: Reprimand someone severely.

  • The teacher blew up when she discovered that the students hadn't done their homework.

7. Break up: If a marriage breaks up or two people in a romantic relationship break up, their marriage or their relationship ends.

  • She's just broken up with her boyfriend.

8. Bring up 

A: Look after a child until it is an adult.

  • She was partly brought up by her maternal grandparents.

B: Raise a matter for discussion or consideration.

  • She tried repeatedly to bring up the subject of money.

9. Call up: To call someone.

  • Sara had called up to invite him.

10. Cheer up: To call someone To be happier or less miserable.

  • She was sick so I sent her some flowers to cheer her up.

11. Come up

A: (of an issue, situation, or problem) occur or present itself, especially unexpectedly.

    • The subject has not yet come up.

B: Become brighter in a specified way as a result of being polished or cleaned.

    • I cleaned up the painting and it came up like new.

12. Crank up: To increase power or volume.

  • Every time that song comes on the radio, I crank it up.

13. Dig up: To search and find hidden objects or information.

  • She was paid thousands of dollars to dig up some dirt on that promising politician.

14. Draw up: To prepare something, usually something official.

  • I've drawn up a list of candidates that I'd like to interview.

15. Dream up: To think about (something new).

  • He was continually dreaming up schemes to expand his business.

16. Dress up: To put on a formal or very cute outfit.

  • She likes to dress her son up to go to out.

17. Drink up: To finish your drink completely.

  • He drank his juice up and went to bed.

18. Eat up: To finish a meal.

  • You must eat up all of your vegetables before you can have cake.

19. End up: To finish a meal To reach a destination or outcome that may be unplanned or unexpected.

  • He drank so much last night that he ended up in a strange bed in a strange apartment.

20. Fill up: To fill something completely.

  • You can borrow my car, but please fill up the tank before you return it.

21. Free up: To make something available to be used.

  • I need to free up some time this weekend to finish the report.

22. Get up

A: To stand up.

  • The whole audience got up and started clapping.

B: If the wind gets up, it starts to grow stronger:

  • The wind is getting up.

23. Give up: To stop, quit, or give up.

  • He gave up smoking ten years ago.

24. Grow up: To gradually become an adult.

  • She thinks that Adam will never grow up.

25. Hang up

A: To end a phone conversation.

  • Let me speak to Melanie before you hang up.

B: Hang from a hook.

  • Your dressing gown's hanging up behind the door.

26. Hike up: To pulling or lifting (usually clothing).

  • When he crossed the flooded street, He hiked up his pants, so they wouldn't get wet.

27. Hold up

A: To steal using a gun or weapon.

  • Sam held up a bank to get some money to buy Sara a ring.

B: To delay or obstruct.

  • The traffic jam held us up for three hours.

28. Hurry up: To do something faster.

  • Hurry up. We are running late.

29. Hush up: To be calm.

  • After the teacher screamed at the top of her lungs, the children hushed up.

30. Keep up

A: Move or progress at the same rate as someone or something else.

  • Often they had to pause to allow him to keep up.

B: Continue a course of action.

  • Keep up the good work.

C: Prevent someone from going to bed or to sleep.

  • The drugs kept her up all night hallucinating.

D: Meet a commitment to pay or do something regularly.

  • He could not keep up the mortgage repayments

E: Learn about or be aware of current events or developments.

  • Even though he's been travelling, he's kept up with what's going on back home

31. Lift up: Take and lift upward.

  • He could not lift her up because she was too heavy.

32. Look up: To find information in a book, or a book-like resource.

  • She decided to look up her ex-boyfriend's phone number.

33. Line up: To stand in a line or queue.

  • The prisoners had to line up before they could enter the dining hall.

34. Make up: To create (story).

  • He is good at making up stories to get himself out of trouble.

35. Measure up: To have necessary or fitting qualifications

  • She would not marry him because she felt that he just didn't measure up.

36. Mess up: To make disorganized or messy

  • Please do not mess up the house. We are having guests over tonight.

37. Open up: Speak frankly.

  • I've never opened up to anyone like I do to you.

38. Perk up: To become more cheerful or energetic

  • The movie perked up a little at the end, but overall it was quite dull.

39. Put up: To raise an erection or build

  • The construction workers put the buildings up in just a few days.

40. Rack up: To gradually get more points and profits

  • He has racked up 450 points in three months.

41. Rip up: To tear something into pieces

  • The teacher ripped his test up because he caught him cheating.

42. Screw up: To make a mistake or do something wrong

  • He screwed up his relationship with her.

43. Set up: To start, organize or configure.

  • He asked her to set up his computer.

44. Speak up: To speak louder.

  • Speak up. I can't hear you.

45. Split up

A: To divide.

  • The bank robbers split the money up equally.

B: If two people split up, they end their relationship or marriage.

  • She split up with her boyfriend last week.

C: If a group of people split up or are split up, they go away in different directions. 

  • Did the two of you split up in the woods?

46. Stand up: To stand.

  • All of the people in the courtroom stood up when the judge entered.

47. Take up

A: If you take up an activity or a subject, you become interested in it and spend time doing it, either as a hobby or as a career.

  • He did not particularly want to take up a competitive sport.

B: If you take up a job, you begin to work at it.

  • He will take up his post as the head of the civil courts at the end of next month.

C: If you take up an offer or a challenge, you accept it.

  • Increasingly, more farmers are taking up the challenge of growing asparagus.

D: If something takes up a particular amount of time, space, or effort, it uses that amount.

  • I know how busy you must be and naturally I wouldn't want to take up too much of your time.

E: If you take up a particular position, you get into a particular place in relation to something else.

  • He had taken up a position in the centre of the room.

F: If you take up something such as a task or a story, you begin doing it after it has been interrupted or after someone else has begun it.

  • Gerry's partner Jo takes up the story.

48. Tangle up: To swirl and mix together into a jagged mass.

  • He accidentally tangled the electrical cords up.

49. Throw up: To vomit.

  • She ate so many cookies that she threw up.

50. Turn up: To increase.

  • Please turn the radio up. I can hardly hear it.

51. Use up: Use all of a stock or supply of something.

  • The money was soon used up.

52. Warm up

A: To cause the temperature to rise to an appropriate level.

  • She warmed the leftovers up in the microwave oven.

B: To raise the temperature to an appropriate level.

  • My office warms up nicely on sunny afternoons.

53. Zip up: (of a garment, pocket, bag, etc.) able to be fastened with a zip.

  • Everyone was staring because he forgot to zip up his pants.



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