The term phrasal verb is commonly applied to two or three distinct but related constructions in English: a verb and a particle and/or a preposition co-occur forming a single semantic unit. This semantic unit cannot be understood based upon the meanings of the individual parts in isolation, but rather it must be taken as a whole. In other words, the meaning is non-compositional and thus unpredictable. Phrasal verbs that include a preposition are known as prepositional verbs and phrasal verbs that include a particle are also known as particle verbs. Additional alternative terms for phrasal verb are compound verb, verb-adverb combination, verb-particle construction, two-part word/verb, and three-part word/verb (depending on the number of particles), and multi-word verb.
fall apart [fɔl ə’pa:t]
If an organization, system or relationship falls apart, it no longer works effectively and eventually fails or ends completely.
– Their marriage began to fall apart.
– The conference was to have taken place yesterday, but it fell apart when one of the most important investors refused to participate.
– Their love began to fall apart.
This week I learnt another useful phrase – it was in an email rather than in a conversation, but it doesn’t make it less authentic, I’m sure. I was going to arrange to speak to somebody on Skype to save us sending each other another half a dozen of emails. I mentioned I could call right not, but the reply was ‘I’m tied up at the moment, shall we Skype later today?’
The meaning is quite obvious, really, but I think it’s one of those ubiquitous (but handy!) phrasal verbs that can express so much in so few words!
Some more useful examples:
– Oh, is it eleven o’clock already? I got so tied up with sending out these invitations that I didn’t even notice (phrasemix.com).
– Sorry, I’m kind of tied up at the moment. Can I call you back? (phrasemix.com).
When learning a new phrasal verb, remember to also pay attention to its structure. That is, focus on whether the verb is used in a transitive or intransitive way, notice what comes after the preposition (for example, a person, an activity or a thing). Indeed the same phrasal verb can have more than one meaning and to a different meaning usually corresponds a different pattern . For instance, ‘to get back from somewhere’ means to return but ‘to get back to someone’ means to contact them usually by phone or email.
This is why below I added in brackets the pattern these 10 phrasal verbs follow when they have the meaning I want to present you with.
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As promised, there is Part 2 of the 8 must-know phrasal verbs, so enjoy it and feel free to ask questions if you’re not sure about anything.
2-I’m up…(up for/up to/up against)
I’m up for some ice cream!
I want some ice cream/I feel like having ice cream now
Can you guess what these mean then?
I’m up for Chinese food. OR are you up for a movie? OR are you up for a game of chess?
The meaning would be completely different though if I used this idiom…
All the materials you find on this website are up for grabs!
All the materials are available FOR FREE! Anyway can just visit the website and take them..
I can also say…
I’m up to the job
I am physically/mentally…
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