Phrasal verbs | Sunday Observer

Phrasal verbs

8 May, 2022

Phrasal verbs are an important feature of the English language. The meaning of a phrasal verb often bears no relation to the meaning of either the verb or the particle which is used with it. Many phrasal verbs have several different meanings.

Pour forth (to appear from somewhere a large number of amounts)
Information about riots poured forth from all parts of the island.
Pour into (to arrive or enter somewhere in very large numbers) A large number of African refugees have poured into the United States.
Pour out (to leave a place in large numbers)
The protesters poured out into the street.
Preside over (to be in charge of an event or situation)
A retired judge will preside over the official inquiry into the theft.
Press ahead (to continue doing something in a determined way)
Thelma is determined to press ahead with her new job despite opposition from her parents.
Press for (to try to persuade someone to give you something or to allow something to happen)
Workers continued to press for higher salaries.
Press forward (to continue doing something in a determined way)
The government is determined to press forward with its programmes of reform.
Press into (to force someone to do something)
Susan was pressed into marriage by her parents.
Press on (to continue doing something in a determined way)
It was raining heavily but we pressed on with our work.
Pretend to (to say that you have some quality although this may not be true)
Muriel does not pretend to any skills as a singer.
Prevail upon (to persuade someone to do something that they did not want to do)
The Member of Parliament was prevailed upon to accept the appointment as a minister.
Prey on (if an animal preys on another animal, it uses it as its food) Snakes prey on frogs and other small insects.
Pride on (to be proud of a quality that you have)
Margaret has always prided herself on being self-sufficient.
Print off (to print a number of copies of a document)
The party office is busy printing off copies of the poster.
Print out (to produce a copy of a document written on a computer) Please print out the caption in italics.
Proceed against (to take legal action against someone)
The company is going to proceed against a group of employees on three charges.
Proceed with (to start something that you have planned to do)
“Now you can proceed with the plan as agreed,” he said.
Prod at (to push your finger into something several times)
I prodded at the fish with my finger.
Profit by (to get an advantage from something)
We usually profit by listening to others.
Pronounce on (to offer a judgment about something)
I am not qualified to pronounce on a subject that I know very little about.
Prop up (to make something stay in a particular position by putting something against it)
Kamala brought a pillow to prop up her daughter’s head.
Proportion to (to make something be the correct size, amount or value in relation to something else)
Your salary will be in proportion to your skills.
Provide against (to make plans in order to prevent a bad situation)
The World Bank is ready to provide against Third World debt.
Provide for (to give someone the things they need)
Miranda has five children to provide for.
Prowl around (to move around a place quietly, trying not to be seen or heard)
Somebody was prowling around my house last night.
Puff away (to smoke a cigarette) I saw him puffing away at his cigarette.
Puff out (to make your chest or cheeks become rounder by filling them with air)
Joe puffed out his cheeks when he shaved his beard.
Puff up (to become larger and full of air)
The medicine made his face puff up.
Puke up (to vomit)
Emma went into the bathroom and puked up.
Pull apart (to separate people or animals that are fighting)
The police had to intervene to pull apart the two men fighting with each other.
Pull at (to pull something several times)
The child started pulling at his mother’s sari.
Pull away (if a vehicle pulls away, it starts moving)
I managed to leap on the bus before it pulled away.
Pull back (if an army pulls back, it moves away from the enemy)
The troops have pulled back from the border.
Pull down (to destroy a building)
The old building was pulled down to make room for a new one.